Value Orientations Of Modern Youth


In different historical epochs, society has always worked out the laws of existence based on morality and ethics to avoid chaos. Societal values become the basis for morality, ethics, and rules. Depending on the era, country, and culture, values may differ and change. At the same time, there are universal values. A human life value is recognized around the world, for instance. The importance of societal values is significant because they are the basis of the social system and order. In other words, developing a value system is the basis for societal functioning and existence. It is essential to understand that being is a subjective thing. Values are constantly changing and transforming under the influence of social factors and the peculiarities of time. In the encyclopedic dictionary of psychology and pedagogy, you can find the following definition of social values. They are beliefs shared by society or a social group about the goals we need to achieve and those main ways and means that lead to these goals. The study of the values of modern Russian youth is topical due to many factors. Firstly, young people act as a driving force for the development of society as a whole. The same can be said about modern young people. Secondly, there is a process of polarization among young people in contemporary Russian, which requires a deeper analysis of the position of young people, in particular, the study of the values of youth and the motives that underlie their behavioral activity.

Keywords: Generation, society, values, value orientations, youth


Values have always been the object of research by philosophers, sociologists, cultural scientists, and other representatives of the humanities. Scholars were interested in the essence of values, together with their functions, system, and structure. Rudkevich (2007), PhD. in philosophy, a specialist in social philosophy, while researching social values, paid attention to the fact that there are two approaches to classifying values from the point of view of their structure. The first one is based on the hierarchy, which a person builds throughout his life: in the family, work, society, state, politics, for example, and the like. In other words, societal values can be structured into a clear hierarchy, where more essential ones are located higher in the mentioned structure. The second approach allows you to divide values into different areas of activity. Below are examples of social values in each sphere, but this is far from a complete list, and they are not arranged in order of priority (Table 1).

Table 1 - Classification of social values by spheres of activity
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In modern sociology, value research is institutionalized and multifaceted: the scale of such work varies from small studies to massive international collaborations based on the unified conceptual framework application and a general methodology (Bykov & Nastina, 2020).

In addition, there are cultural and spiritual, material and non-material values (Gryaznova & Afanasyev, 2019). Spiritual and cultural categories include creativity, art, religious feelings, moral ideals, and moral qualities. The material ones contain real estate, capital, money, equipment, and other tangible things that bring comfort and pleasure, and the non-material ones include family, friendship, good manners, and more (Rudkevich, 2007).

Problem Statement

The article examines the values of modern youth. Throughout time, the morals of the younger generation have changed. What are the current values of contemporary youth? Russian society has been experiencing a spiritual and moral decline for a long time: the state apparatus has no official ideology, and the nation has no spiritual or moral ideals. Pragmatism and preoccupation with material problems characterize the world of modern youth. The topicality lies in the fact that regardless of time, young people remain the essential reserve for the nation's prosperity, and the future fate of the country depends on what values they will have.

Research Questions

The main content of value orientations is political, philosophical (ideological), personal moral beliefs, deep permanent attachments, and moral principles of behaviour (Entsiklopedicheskiy.., 2012). Because of this, individual value orientations in any society are the object of education and purposeful influence. They both act at the consciousness and subconscious levels, determining the direction of volitional efforts, attention, and intelligence. The mechanism of action and development of value orientations is associated with the need to resolve contradictions and conflicts in the motivational sphere, in the most general form, expressed in the struggle between duty and desire, moral and utilitarian motives. Values are in constant motion: some are born, others die, third ones transform from one kind to another. But all the elements of the value system are closely related to each other, conditioning, complementing, or opposing each other. Before values turn into a value orientation, they pass through the filters of consciousness and are systematized. The value orientation concept is closely related to the notion of values. The term "value orientation" complements "value," emphasizing its dynamic aspect. The mechanism of value orientation formation is expressed in the scheme: "interest - attitude - value orientation."

While becoming a personality, a definite system of value orientations is formed with a more or less developed structure of personality behaviour. Although the values prevailing in the society and the individual's immediate social surrounding environment form the system of personal value orientations, it is not strictly predetermined by them.

The system of value orientations is not given once and for all: with changes in living conditions, and the personality itself, new values appear, and sometimes there is their complete or partial reassessment. The value orientations of young people as the most active part of Russian society are the first to undergo changes caused by various processes occurring in the country's life. Currently, there is an increasing interest in the problems and culture of young people in Russian society.

Youth is a specific component of Russian society. Her interests and cultural life differ from the interests of representatives of other age groups. The range of interests of modern Russian youth is extensive and versatile: from alcohol and drugs to literature, music, theater, and cinema. Young people are actively interested in religion and fashion, painting and computers, sports, and graffiti. One of the features of youth culture is its heterogeneity (Stakanova, 2017). Along with traditional culture, there is also a counterculture, manifesting itself in various youth movements, such as hippies, skinheads, and punks. Young people are trying to find and express themselves somehow in life, in any subculture.

Thus, the problem of value orientations of youth remains invariably relevant throughout the sociology of youth existence. Currently, we should pay significant attention to young people as a natural environment for the future elite of the state formation. Modern youth makes their historical choice (Simonenko, 2009). They should choose, but it should not be random and erroneous. Only those goals that are recognized by society as valuable are due. The system of new values is the stumbling block of Russian reforms. People turn into reality, into their culture only what an individual, a nation, a society believes and values. If people neither believe in reforms nor appreciate them, the reforms are sure to fail.

The role of students in socio-political processes around the world is due to the importance of people with higher education in the social stratification of society and the life prospects of young people (Surovov et al., 2019). Within the framework of the online survey “Values of modern Youth,” a methodology for constructing a random (probabilistic) sample has been implemented. This made it possible to extrapolate the data obtained to the general population of the subject under study.

According to the constructed sample, 51% of young people and 49% of girls participated in the survey. Following the research program, young people aged 16 to 24 years partook in the survey. All survey participants at the time of writing were students of higher educational institutions.

In our opinion, it is a mistake to think that a younger generation may have some community value replaced or completely absent. It is crucial to understand that the morals of modern youth will be the same as those of the older generation, but at the same time, young people will rank them differently.

Among all values, the most meaningful for theoretical analysis and comparison are the values of family, money (let us consider them, though they are not included in the classification in the table), and freedom. The non-linearity of the development of marriage and family institutions means that these trends are not necessarily to be repeated in the following decades (Gurko, 2017). Individuals and families systematically deviate from institutional family norms to adapt to the norms of other institutions, such as work and education (Gurko, 2016).

New trends in the development of marriage and family relations are associated both with the impact of global economic and socio-cultural processes and with the peculiarities of the transformation of Russian society (Gurko & Marchenko, 2019).

Family is one of the principal values in any historical period of humanity. On the one hand, it is the foundation of the foundations of any society and will always be the highest value. On the other hand, values are closely interdependent on many social factors. A significant part of the population also understands the traditional family as a two-parent family with children (Klupt, 2019).

Over the past few decades, the student youth, to a greater extent, prefers a civil marriage to a registered one. At the same time, young people highly appreciate family relations. We suppose that civil marriage is economically advantageous for students: it is much easier and cheaper to rent an apartment and run a household together, and sexual relations are also stable. The data showed that the prevailing number of students participating in the survey had a positive attitude towards civil marriage. And they considered such relationships acceptable. Currently, 50 percent of the students participating in our survey live in a civil marriage.

The main obstacle to starting a family is the lack of their housing. Although many people can get a mortgage, high-interest rates stop them, and they fear paying it back for a long time. We can explain such behavior among young people by lack of stability, confidence in the future, and the desire to preserve relative freedom and independence.

Purpose of the Study

The purpose of the paper is to analyze the modern values of young people living in the Khabarovsk Territory.

Research Methods

We used in the research structural-functional and comparative methods.


Ekaterina Shulman, a political scientist (Shulman & Kutuzova, 2021), paid attention to a new perception of family value among the citizens of Europe. And a whole chain of factors led to this attitude, the first of which was the change of the traditional work schedule of the "home-work-home" format to the format of freelancing and remote work.

For young people, the standard format no longer looks attractive, but on the contrary, is perceived as outdated and inconvenient. And this is not only the private employees' opinion. Companies that have managed to transfer their business to an online format have also recognized its viability compared to offices. Freelancing and remote work, especially in demand during the global COVID-19 epidemic, have become new norms of work, opening up up-to-date opportunities for people: self-preparation of a convenient work schedule, lack of binding to a specific city, street, office, more comfortable working conditions (comfortable sofa and home clothes), and also there is no need to leave home.

These opportunities have created a new value – mobility. As a result, the need for their real estate began to decline, as people started to value their mobility above the conventional "bricks and walls." Now a person has the opportunity to change his place of residence, city, or even country at least every month without losing his job.

Approximately the same attitude began to form towards car ownership. Car-sharing services are becoming more and more popular in Europe because it is not expensive, and, besides, it does not limit a person's ability to move. Thus, it becomes apparent to people that it is much more complicated to travel to another city or country having real estate and a car than without them. Therefore, more and more people prefer renting housing instead of purchasing it, car-sharing services instead of personal car ownership.

The following problem follows from this chain - the so-called "single." "Singles" are people who refuse to create a family or create it at a later age. The values of such people are somewhat different from the standard public ones, where the family is the central value. There is no need for them to create a vital cell of society, which people used to make because it was easier to survive that way. It is possible to reach the general European standard of living independently, even working remotely. Typically, such singles do not create stable long-term relationships, preferring one-time short meetings. Moreover, social networks and dating sites close this human need for intimacy and communication.

The value of personal freedom has become a little more desirable and significant for a modern person than the family creation due to absolute freedom of movement and not being tied to the workplace, as was the human life formula of the 20th century.

The value of love, family, and friendship is a section of non-material values. However, the issue of material values and their specific perception at the moment is no less acute.

Many sociologists and cultural scientists mark the cultural era of the 21st century as the century of material values, when capital, money, and brands come out on top. Instability in society, unsteady political balance, and distrust of the authorities have made people need stability and reliability, confidence in the future (Simonenko, 2009). And all this (or the illusion of it) can be given by material values. Capitalism dictates its own rules to society.

We see additional confirmation of this need in the increased demand for knowledge in the field of financial literacy and investment (Shchemeleva, 2019). Young people strive for financial independence for various reasons, including gender (for example, when a woman wants to be independent of a man). The younger generation also strives to be not only independent but also abundant. However, the noticeable "materialism" among young people, which we observe through youth culture, allows us to assert that material values are becoming more and more significant for them, against the background of general social development.

A theoretical review of the selected values showed that the modern perception of material and non-material values in society is changing.


Studying values, stereotypes, worldviews, and the behavioral activity of young people is interdisciplinary. Various elements, aspects, factors that constitute the socialization process of young people, influencing the behavior of young people, are considered by representatives of social sciences and humanities. Various factors demonstrate the topicality of the values study of modern Russian youth. Firstly, in any historical period, young people act as a driving force for the development of society as a whole. The same can be said about modern youth. Secondly, there is a polarization process among young people in contemporary Russian society. It requires a deeper study of the position of young people, in particular, the study of the values of youth and their motives that underlie their behavioral activity. Thirdly, young people are dynamic in terms of exposure to the influence of political and economic factors. The state youth policy as a separate branch of management should be based on up-to-date data indicating the attitudes and orientations of the youth environment. The study of the value aspirations of young people allows us to build a popular and modern system of state response measures to the generation's particular demands. In this regard, systematic studies of the given issue imply the research of the dynamically changing situation in the youth community to develop flexible response measures to the changing conjuncture.

Youth is a significant subject of social change and an enormous innovative force. And it is necessary to use this power wisely. But we should not forget that representatives of different social groups and regions have different orientations towards education and upbringing, differing in educational levels and cultural training. And the requirements for them are most often the same (Kapustina, 2017).

The current young generation has to solve many crucial tasks in various fields and spheres of life. And these decisions determine the country's development and values we leave behind for our descendants.

Modern youth is more adapted to today's life. A rich experience was a valuable social contribution for their parents. The ability to refuse or rethink values of "eternity" quickly becomes a crucial resource and survival technique for young people in transformation conditions (Shulman & Kutuzova, 2021). Thanks to these qualities, young people adapt to changing living conditions, master market practices and survival techniques faster, respond more adequately to new consumer demand, join information networks, and master technologies more easily (Tazov, 2015).


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03 June 2022

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Shimolina, M. V., Lutsenko, E. L., Tyurina, J. A., Savin, S. D., & Gareeva, I. A. (2022). Value Orientations Of Modern Youth. In N. G. Bogachenko (Ed.), AmurCon 2021: International Scientific Conference, vol 126. European Proceedings of Social and Behavioural Sciences (pp. 853-859). European Publisher.