Developed by The Marketing Store Worldwide, the index measures kids happiness around the globe and yields valuable insights for marketers.
Chicago, IL (December 10, 2012) — The first-ever Global Kids Happiness Index, created by brand activation agency The Marketing Store Worldwide (TMSW), shows that kids in the U.S. rank fifth when it comes to being happy. According to the index, kids in Mexico are the happiest with kids in Spain, Brazil, and Germany following closely, in that order.
The Global Kids Happiness Index was developed as part of “The New Definition of Childhood” Global Kids Study (www.globalkidsstudy.com). The research asked more than 4,000 children aged 6-12 years in 12 countries (U.S., Canada, UK, France, Germany, Spain, Poland, Brazil, Mexico, Japan, China, Australia) what it’s like to be growing up in the world today.
“Given the constant stream of bad news in the media and challenging times faced by so many communities and families today, you might expect today’s kids to be feeling pretty unhappy. But our research shows that happiness is the most common state for kids no matter the age, ethnicity, or location,” says Renee Weber, V.P. of Consumer Strategy and Research at The Marketing Store Worldwide.
According to TMSW’s research, the most important sources of kids’ happiness, across almost all countries, are family and friends. Correspondingly, most kids said they feel very close to their family (99% agree; 82% strongly agree) and have very good friends (98% agree; 65% strongly agree). “Play” consistently ranked third among sources of happiness. Interestingly, the one exception was Japan where kids say that playing and video games outrank family and friends as influencing their happiness.
Beyond the top 3, happiness drivers varied greatly by country. For instance, competition and accomplishments were rarely mentioned by U.S. kids, but were frequently mentioned by Chinese kids. Japanese kids often reported “the arts” (drawing, music, crafts) as making them happy. U.S. kids frequently mentioned “animals” (dogs, cats, pets, birds) as an important source of their happiness.
Another finding that is consistent across all countries is that Global Kids happiness is not something that improves with age. More than three quarters of six-year olds (76%) say they “feel happy most of the time.” By the time they are twelve years old, less than two-thirds (62%) feel that way. Correspondingly, younger kids are slightly happier being their age compared to older kids. This decline in happiness coincides with—or is partly driven by—kids’ changing worldview. At six years of age, the majority of kids (58%) strongly view the world “as a good place.” By twelve years of age, less than half agree (41%).
Happiness Index yields important...