We might be a glass half-full bunch in the UK (not a lot wrong with that, unless it’s a pint glass), which might explain why many young Brits are less than optimistic over the impact of the UK’s vote to leave the EU, believing that people abroad will be less likely to visit, do business with and make friends with Britain. Overseas, young people’s perceptions of “Brexit Britain” are more upbeat.
These were the findings of recent surveys conducted by IPSOS Mori for the British Council that looked at perceptions of 18-34 year olds in G20 countries towards the UK before and after that referendum.
The surveys showed that the overall “attractiveness” of the UK remained unchanged after the Brexit vote, with 36% of respondents saying that the referendum outcome had made no impact on their perception. The UK as a globally attractive nations sits in 4th place worldwide behind Canada, Australia, Italy and France.
The report also showed, encouragingly:
- 57% of G20 respondents said that the UK’s vote to quit the EU made no impact on their visiting the UK. A quarter of respondents from countries outside the UK said they were more likely to visit
- 52% of respondents across the G20 said the vote would make no difference to their decision to do business or trade with the UK
- Britain was mostly viewed as a global power by young people in China (80%), who also mostly agreed that Brits value diversity and cultural difference (76%)
The report, From the Outside In, is available to download in PDF and is well worth a read if you’re interested in how young people across the world – who lest we forget are tomorrow’s decision-makers – perceive Britain after the Brexit vote. There are signs of encouragement…and equally work to do. I think our continental neighbours even have a phrase for it – plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose.