Canadian youth more interested in Asia than older Canadians . . .
Today, APF Canada released its 2021 National Opinion Poll: Canada’s Generational Perspectives on Asia. Mindful of the importance of building a sustainable multicultural Canadian society given Canada’s growing social diversity, and amid persistent anti-Asian racism in Canada, this year APF Canada focused its annual poll on Canadian youth, alongside general Canadian perspectives of Asia and Asia competency in Canada. Our researchers found that Canadian youth are more interested in learning about Asia than older generations, while they also hold warmer feelings toward Asia. Moreover, while 29 per cent of Gen Z identify as Canadian of Asian descent, more than in other age groups, it is not only Canadian youth of Asian descent who are open to Asia, but all young Canadians – reflecting a broad interest in Asia among our country’s youth.
Canadians support building Asia competency . . .
Canadians of all ages are more likely than not to think building competency about Asia in the areas of society, culture, and protocols and etiquette will be of significant importance to Canada’s future economic growth and social diversity. Further, 57 per cent of Canadians are somewhat or very interested in learning more about Asia. Canadians identify engagement in community events celebrating Asian cultures (47%) and teaching about Asia in education (46%) as the most effective methods of building awareness about Asia. However, only 18 per cent of Canadians feel their high school education was a source of information about Asia, and 76 per cent say they had ‘too little’ or ‘no exposure’ to Asia in high school.
Views on Asia . . .
While the poll provides a strong justification for opening opportunities for Canadians to learn about Asia, it also finds support for deepening Canada-Asia relations and collaboration on global challenges. Notably, most Canadians see positive implications of immigration from Asia on Canada’s near future, as well as positive impacts on Canada from Asia’s cultural influence, Asian technology and innovation, and economic growth in Asia. The poll also shows that even before the resolution of the Meng Wanzhou and two Michaels cases, Canadians’ feelings toward China recovered in 2021 from a decade-low level in 2020. Watch APF Canada’s ‘Dispatches’ page for a deeper analysis of the poll’s findings in the coming weeks.
- APF Canada: 2020 National Opinion Poll: Canadian Views on Asia
- APF Canada: Resources for Combatting Anti-Asian Racism & Learning About Canadians of Asian Descent
- Asia New Zealand Foundation: Perceptions of Asia 2020