MTV Global Youth Survey Finds Richer is Sadder

23 November 2006

NEW YORK: A new survey of global youth carried out by music TV pioneer MTV Networks tells a tale of two worlds: the material one where young people are well-off but miserable, and the developing one where they are poor but happier and more optimistic about the future.

The survey, which resulted in the Wellbeing Index, polled more than 5,200 young people aged between eight and 34 in fourteen countries.

India produced young people with the greatest perceived sense of wellbeing, followed by Sweden, and the US third. The UK showed up at number six while Brazil was at the bottom of the list.

Comments Bill Roedy, MTV president: "Overall our study showed that developing countries had considerably higher levels of happiness and optimism, but that other factors such as the lack of personal safety compromised their perceived wellbeing."

The broadcaster, part of the Viacom empire, will use the data to develop public affairs initiatives relevant to its global audience such as climate change and obesity.

The survey results will also inform developments on MTV's 130 channels and 150 digital services worldwide.

Adds Roedy: "The world is changing at unprecedented speed and our research has revealed unique and surprising youth cultural differences between developing and developed countries."

He adds: "This survey underscores our commitment to understanding the diversity of kids and young people throughout the world."

Data sourced from; additional content by WARC staff