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A new survey by the Finnish Youth Research Network indicates that 15–25 year-olds in Finland are more dissatisfied with their lives than ever before.  

The annual Youth Barometer, which compiles information on the attitudes and values of young Finns, along with issues relevant to them, registered the sharpest decline in overall life satisfaction yet last year. 

The survey, which had over 1,000 respondents, was conducted via telephone in autumn. Participants were asked to grade their life satisfaction over the previous six months on a scale of 4–10. 

Ratings among 15–25 year-olds fell by 0.5 from 2019 to reach 8 at the end of last year. This is the lowest grade in the history of the Youth Barometer, which has been measuring life satisfaction among Finnish youth since 1997. 

Girls in the same age group reported the lowest degree of satisfaction with their lives. Boys with a first language other than Finnish or Swedish also recorded a significant decrease in overall contentment. 

The result did not come as a surprise for most experts, as current restrictions to curb the spread of the coronavirus have impacted most aspects of young people’s lives, limiting social interactions and disrupting school life and extracurricular activities. 

Boys in all age groups, 12–14 year-olds, children with higher socio-economic status, primary school students and those living with guardians registered the highest overall satisfaction with their lives. The full report for the 2020 Youth Barometer will be published in March.

 

Tahira Sequeira

Helsinki Times