South African Optimism for the Future is Higher than Global Average
South African Optimism for the Future is Higher than Global Average. Photo: Pixabay

Despite the impact of the pandemic, and economic hardship, the majority of South Africans are more optimistic about the future than most folk around the world, according to a recent global survey.

The Expo 2020 Dubai survey – conducted with YouGov – tracked global sentiment and hope in a world irrevocably changed by COVID-19. More than 22 000 people between the ages of 18-40+ were interviewed, with participants coming from 24 countries. Survey topics focused on health and wellness, sustainable travel, efficient food supply chains and the development of urban and rural communities.

This is what the survey discovered:

  • South Africans want more opportunities for youth. SA is the second country in the global study to cite next generation empowerment as the most significant future action.
  • Nine out of 10 South Africans believe collaboration is key to tackle its most pressing challenges. South Africans emphasised the value of collaboration and knowledge sharing to address global challenges. #StrongerTogether was also a sentiment shared by many others around the world.
  • 76% believe greater knowledge exchange between individuals and communities can shape a better future — 14% higher than the global response.
  • 70% said that sharing global innovations, insights and expertise is crucial towards overcoming humanity’s present obstacles.

The study also discovered a shift in priorities around employment and purchasing. When asked about lifestyle changes, most of those surveyed prioritised working remotely while supporting local small businesses and purchasing local products.

Her Excellency Reem Al Hashimy, UAE Minister of State for International Cooperation and Director General of Expo 2020 Dubai, adds:

“Expo 2020 has developed this latest global study to help us understand how the citizens of the world believe we can shape a better future. Overall, the findings are encouraging, and show a collective desire to work together, broaden our horizons and exchange ideas.”

The Dubai Expo 2020 will take place 1 October 2021 – 31 March 2022.

For further information about the latest global survey by Expo 2020: