Young people in the age of the COVID-19 pandemic: the age-related benefits and limitations

Release:

2021, Vol. 5. № 2 (16)

Title: 
Young people in the age of the COVID-19 pandemic: the age-related benefits and limitations

Author: Maiya A. Yadova

For citation: Yadova M. A. 2021. “Young people in the age of the COVID-19 pandemic: the age-related benefits and limitations”. Siberian Socium, vol. 5, no. 2 (16), pp. 20-28. DOI: 10.21684/2587-8484-2021-5-2-20-28

About the author:

Maiya A. Yadova, Cand. Sci. (Soc.), Head of the Department of Sociology and Social Psychology, Institute of Scientific Information for Social Sciences, Russian Academy of Sciences (Moscow, Russian Federation); ORCID: 0000-0002-2988-1513; m.yadova@mail.ru

Abstract:

This article explores the prospects of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on young people in Russia and abroad. Particular attention is paid to the phenomenon that modern researchers refer to as “coronavirus ageism”. This study shows that in the age of the pandemic, the young age becomes a natural resource that significantly increases the chances of adapting to the social transformations caused by the pandemic. The author’s sociological research of adaptation strategies and social practices of the post-Soviet youth in the age of the pandemic shows that digital acumen helps to overcome the negative consequences of the coronavirus crisis. The mediation role of the first digital generations in the modern world — Millennials and Generation Z — is important in transferring IT knowledge and skills to older generations. Thus, the intensity of intergenerational contacts can be considered as one of the key factors positively influencing the digital literacy of older generations. This fact provides an opportunity to look differently at the familiar problem of the generational gap. However, there are deprived young people for whom the prospects of succeeding in life in the age of the new coronavirus pandemic are slim. Many young people living in the world’s poorest countries (or regions) have limited access to digital technologies and education. Some young people are cut off from quality health services, which poses a threat not only to their health but also to their lives. Some young people are faced with the hardships of unemployment, suffer from violence, cannot cope with negative emotions and loneliness, have experienced the death of loved ones or friends, etc.

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