Birth rate emergency, younger generations say: “It’s not just an issue of economic stability”

This was the overall sentiment that emerged during the second event held by the Menarini International Foundation’s Think Tank ON RADAR, which brought together 45 participants between experts and students in a series of 5 round table discussions.

ROME, May 4th, 2023 – “We live in a society full of stimuli, models of perfection that make you feel you should always do your best.  This leads you to seek perfectionism in everything you do: in romantic relationships, at work, in being a parent. And perfectionism paralyses.” 

These are the words of a university student who took part in the meeting entitled “Natalità, politically incorrect” (“Birth rate, politically incorrect”), the second event held by the Menarini International Foundation’s Think Tank ON RADAR.  The research group, led by Director Massimo Scaccabarozzi, brought together 45 people in 5 round tables to discuss and explore the topic of birth rate from different points of view.  From the perspective of younger generations, together with that of experts in the field of communication, business, and education, to examine a society that tends increasingly towards individualism, and experts who analysed the causes and consequences of the Italian demographic shift from an unconventional point of view, acknowledging that younger generations have a central role to play in this trend.

The students who took part in the Think Tank overturned the idea that their generation needs just economic stability for them to have children.  Whilst financial security is important, the real problem lies in the fact that society is only capable of offering young people an idealised present and a future difficult to plan ahead for.

It is no coincidence then, as highlighted in the round table dedicated to Communications, that children are hardly ever represented in advertising campaigns and are often seen as being more of a burden than a joy.  The media should, on the other hand, strive to express “the energy, the poetry, and the future potential” that children are able to convey.


Companies are also suffering the effects of the demographic decline with a resulting lack of a viable workforce.  In the short term, the absence of workers has to be compensated for by developing internal and international migration policies, consistent with the professional skills companies are seeking as well as by supporting female employment.  Couples also need to be supported through public incentives which may allow them to have their first child at an earlier age as well as encourage them to have a second, thus increasing, in the long term, a new generation of potential parents.

“Lower birth rates mean fewer future parents.  It is a demographic trap, a vicious circle that threatens our country.  With figures like these we are throwing away our future which can only be saved by listening to the younger generations,” commented Scaccabarozzi.

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