The booming middle class of China, India, Brazil, Mexico, Russia contribute in their own way for driving the future economies. There are some very strong similarities in the middle class across the world in general and more so in developing economies.
There will be differences if we microscopically look at the daily lives as the culture and outlook are different depending on history. For example a youth taking to drinking alcohol or smoking in Russia at an early age can be normal as irrespective of class this is normal. But same will not be the case in India for example.
To look at differences and elaborating it is probably a way to defend why we should think complex but to look at similarities is a way to look at world as one.
Being the middle is always a challenge. Those born with Silver spoons don't bother too much as there is everything even without asking for it. Those born in poverty struggle with getting basic necessities of life as they cannot think beyond next time meals. Those born in the middle class have to prove to their parents that they can achieve and be disciplined to get something they wish to have. This sets a performance/reward culture in them. Since the surplus is not too much they realize the difficulties of the poor much better. This makes them more sensitive to the society they live in. There is an opportunity for the kids to spend time with their grand parents who usually have moved up the society with their hard work and know the value of education. They get to know the basic values of life from them. This is different from the rich parents who neither have time/is not a priority or the poor parents who cannot afford to spend quality time with their kids.
This setting is quite ideal for the children of middle class as they aspire to grow with their hard work and learning. The fact that Obama mentions several times that the skill set of Indians/Chinese students is much higher is that a developing economies are in the middle-not like US a developed economy and accompanying ego state or not like some African countries an under developed country where survival is an achievement.
Therefore to say that Middle Class will sit in a driver seat to shape the future Global economies is an understatement. They will be the brain, energy and fuel (as they will also be consumers to the products/services) and aspiration to the future. There is no doubt that the moderate middle class will also slowly force more aggressive and repressive regimes to change. This makes me feel more comfortable that the future is in safe hands. Let us hope that the middle class in their aspiration to grow don't get the success in their heads and spoil the next generation. To sustain a few more generation of middle class power with middle class mind set is key to a bright future of the world. I also hope there is some more cross collaboration among the middle class of different economies to ensure we move to a quicker learning and adoption across the world including Green Initiatives.
- ► 2009 (34)