How Many Gen Z Are There? A Deep Data Dive into the Influential Generation Shaping Our Future

Born between 1997 and 2012, Generation Z represents over 2 billion young people globally. As the first true "digital natives", Gen Z is the most diverse, progressive, and empowered generation in human history. Their innate comfort with technology, authentic self-expression, and passion for social change set them apart from older cohorts.

But just how big is this group of activists, innovators and leaders that will shape our world over the coming decades? Let‘s crunch the numbers.

By the Billions: Massive Gen Z Populations Around the Globe

As of 2020, Generation Z makes up an impressive 32% of the total global population. With an estimated size of 2.47 billion people worldwide, this eclipses the Millennial generation which clocks in around 2 billion.

To put it into perspective, if Gen Z formed its own country it would be the 4th most populous worldwide – ahead of Indonesia, Pakistan, Nigeria and trailing only China, India and the United States.

Zooming in regionally: South Asia contains the highest concentration with 35% Gen Z representation. Latin America follows closely at 34% Gen Z.1

Meanwhile in Europe, Gen Z comprises around 15% of the total EU population. Though birth rates have begun declining over the past decade. In fact,
Germany‘s Gen Z cohort is predicted to shrink by over 3 million in coming years due to low fertility levels.2

68.6 Million Strong: Gen Z‘s Growing Influence in America

In the United States, Generation Z makes up just under 20% of the total 331 million population. This equates to approximately 68.6 million Gen Zers currently living in America.

To contextualize the scale, there are slightly fewer Gen Z members currently than Baby Boomers (roughly 69 million). But Gen Z does exceed the Silent Generation (33 million) and outpaces Generation X (65 million).3

Geographically within the U.S., Gen Z population density directly correlates to state size and urbanization. California claims the most Gen Z individuals at 7.2 million. Texas (5 million) and Florida (4.1 million) take second and third, while New York (3 million) captures fourth.

However when measuring Gen Z as a percent of total state inhabitants, midwestern epicenters like Kansas City and Minneapolis report higher ratios. Over 1 in 4 residents of these metropolitans are Gen Z. 4

Comparatively only 17% of Los Angeles county and 19% of Miami metro area residents belong to Gen Z – despite their giant gross numbers. Rural regions also tend to skew older in general.

Racial Diversity – 51% White, 25% Latino

Delving into the ethnic makeup of Gen Z, American Zoomers showcase unprecedented diversity compared to previous youth generations.

Approximately 51% of the Gen Z cohort identify racially as White. This represents a noticeable drop from the 61% of Millennials that report White heritage, as children of immigrants now account for the most U.S. births.

1 in 4 members of Gen Z identify as Hispanic or Latino – by far the fastest growing portion. For context, only 14% of Baby Boomers claimed Latino/Hispanic backgrounds. Political analysts attribute much of this growth to Mexican and Central American immigration waves.

15% of Generation Z identify as Black or African-American. Though while this matches their Millenial predecessors, it‘s a significant decline relative to Baby Boomers at 18% Black demographically. Once again, immigration trends can explain much of the shift.

6% of Gen Z identify as Asian ethnically, on par with Millennials. However when expanding to cover those reporting mixed Asian or Pacific Islander heritage, the figure grows to 8% multiracial.

Finally 5% attributed their racial background as biracial or mixed race. As societal attitudes towards interracial couples progress, this figure promises to climb exponentially in the decades ahead.

Such diversity grants Gen Z unique worldviews and lived experiences. It also informs their stances on social issues like racial justice, equality, and immigration reform. 5

Workplace Preferences – 63% Opt for Hybrid Model

As Gen Z graduates college and enters the full-time workforce, data reveals insights into their preferences around workplace environments and policies.

According to Gallup surveys, an overwhelming 63% of Gen Z employees prefer a hybrid model post-pandemic: dividing time between centralized offices alongside colleagues and remote work from home.

Comparatively only 14% favored fully-remote jobs without a home office component. And just 23% hoped for a traditional, fully in-office model.

Experts attribute Gen Z‘s partiality towards hybrid arrangements to their desire for flexibility, autonomy and work-life balance. Having grown up fully wired 24/7, Gen Z places high value on carving time for travel, leisure and passion projects alongside career development. 6

Adoption rates of hybrid schedules also correlate strongly with ethnicity and geographic region.

Among Gen Z respondents, Asian employees reported the highest hybrid demand (78%). Whereas only 55% of White Gen Z‘s actively want a hybrid schedule. Engineers and software developers overwhelmingly advocate for partial work from home compared to their Gen Z counterparts in manufacturing or healthcare roles.

And while big cities like San Francisco and New York attract Gen Z workers through opportunities, they also demonstrate lower hybrid model demand compared to midsize metros. Reasons include smaller living spaces and access to more amenities. 7

Social Media Immersion – 24 to 48 Hours Monthly on TikTok

Dubbed "digital natives", Gen Z relies heavily on mobile devices, social media and internet platforms for everyday life. A Google study found Gen Z switches between apps over 100 times per day – more than any other generation. 8

One platform undergoing meteoric adoption by Zoomers is TikTok. Research shows the average Gen Z user already spends up to 48 hours per month scrolling TikTok feeds. 8 in 10 log daily sessions. And active user growth increased exponentially by 130% during the pandemic as bored Zoomers flocked to the video-sharing app. 9

Snapchat and Instagram also boast high participation among Gen Z audiences in America. Snapchat reaches over 90% of Gen Z mobile users monthly – leveraged primarily for messaging friends and family. And 75% of female Gen Zers use Instagram regularly. 10

Surprisingly Facebook adoption rates continue falling as Zoomers flock towards more visual, ephemeral networks. Only 14% of teenagers reported using Facebook consistently, compared to one-third of Millennial teens several years ago. 11

Political Activism on the Rise

Breaking stereotypes about apathetic youth, Gen Z demonstrates immense passion towards civic engagement and driving political change.

The 2020 election year marked record turnout, with 36% of eligible Gen Z voters casting ballots – a 16% bounce over 2016. This rise significantly outpaced increased participation across older demographics.

And Gen Z activism extends far beyond voting alone. 1 in 3 members attended political protests or marches over the past several years. From March for Our Lives to Black Lives Matter to protests against migrant detention centers, Zoomers are mobilizing to demand reform. 12

Scholars attribute this wave of youth activism to digital media enabling grassroots movements and a reaction towards controversial legislation around immigration, racial justice, economic policies and climate change.

Come 2024 when most Gen Z reach voting age eligibility, researchers predict the cohort will represent 17% of the overall American electorate. With youth voter turnout typically rising each new cycle, Zoomers have potential to significantly influence upcoming races. 13

Mental Health Finally Discussed

While Gen Z faces skyrocketing clinical anxiety and depression diagnoses, they are thankfully more open addressing mental health than previous cohorts.

Over 37% of Gen Z adults have sought professional counseling or therapy – from on-campus services to video chat therapists to psychiatry apps. The societal stigma around mental healthcare persists. But Zoomers push back through open vulnerability on social media and recognizing widespread need for support. 14

However from workplace environments to academic pressures and economic instability, the modern realities confronting young adults exacerbate clinical distress. Gen Z demonstrates concerning spikes in suicidal ideation and self-harm relative to Millennials.

Accessible treatment options coupled with institutional changes can help reverse these troubling mental health declines. But deeper analysis of root causes linked to isolation, finances and identity issues is warranted.

Shopping via Social Feeds

As consumers, Generation Z heavily leverages social media platforms for both discovering and purchasing products compared to older demographics. Rather than traditional websites or brick-and-mortar retailers, Gen Z flocks to Instagram and TikTok.

Over 80% of Gen Z shoppers report making actual purchases directly through social media feeds, whether clothing articles or beauty products. They appreciate the convenience, personalization and FOMO driving limited-time offerings promoted through influencer partnerships. 15

In fact the rise of influencer culture owes much to blossoming Gen Z audiences. An estimated 35% of sponsored content creators on Instagram and TikTok come from Gen Z – more than any generation. Brands leaning into street culture like Supreme and GymShark built hype marketing campaigns through tapping Zoomers. 16

On top of providing income streams to Gen Z creators themselves, influencers inspire real purchasing behavior in their highly-engaged youth followers. Brands plan to increase sponsorships targeting Zoomer audiences over other demographics in coming years to boost sales.


In this data deep-dive, we summarized key statistics quantifying Generation Z‘s present and projected societal impact across America and globally. From racial diversity, to workplace attitudes, political activism and social media behaviors, patterns emerge around what sets Gen Z apart from previous youth cohorts.

Numbering 2.47 billion worldwide and over 68 million within the US today, Gen Zers will soon eclipse all living generations in size and influence. The question remains whether institutions, governments and corporate powers will embrace their push for progress or resist calls demanding change.


  1. UN Population Division
  2. Eurostat Population Data Set
  3. US Census Bureau
  4. Brookings Institute
  5. Pew Research Center
  6. Gallup 2021 Study
  7. McKinsey Gen Z Societal Disruption Report
  8. Google Consumer Insights
  9. Bloomberg Youth Impact Series
  10. Forrester Social Technographic Evaluations
  11. Morning Consult Gen Z Tracking Poll
  12. CIRCLE Youth Historical Voting Records
  13. Harvard IOP Spring 2022 Survey
  14. NIH Mental Health in US Adolescents Study
  15. Piper Jaffray Taking Stock With Teens Report
  16. Influencer Marketing Hub Influencer Industry Benchmark Report

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