After a year-long reporting effort by The GroundTruth Project, a clearer picture is emerging of a millennial generation facing an uncertain global economy.

Our team of 21 GroundTruth reporting fellows journeyed to 11 countries to tell the story of their own generation. It’s a complex picture which combines devastating realities for many young people who economists believe will be the first generation to be worse off than their parents.

But it is also a demographic group, typically defined as being born between 1980 and 2004, that holds out great promise for innovation and an entrepreneurial spirit that seems woven into their identity as digital natives. And this generation is actively, some might say desperately, being courted by President Obama as the swing vote in American electoral politics.

This year, it seems the world has begun to realize that a large piece of the millennial generation has suffered the consequences of an increasingly unequal global economy that has fostered despair and in many places, from Brazil’s street protests to the uprisings of the Arab Spring, violent expressions of dissatisfaction.

In Brazil, they mobilized to boycott the World Cup, accusing the government of squandering their future to host wealthy tourists rather than create opportunities for the country’s residents.

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