Jangmadang Generation

Meet the North Korean Millennials: those who were born from the 1980s until the late 90s, commonly known as the "Jangmadang Generation” in North Korea.

What sets them apart significantly is the education they received, which was much less focused on the idolization of the Kim family, partly due to the decline of free education. This means that their loyalty to the North Korean regime might not be as strong as that of the older generations. Moreover, having been exposed to Korean dramas and movies, they have a lens through which they can critically assess the information they receive, helping them differentiate between what they are told and what they personally perceive to be true. It seems like they give more importance to individual achievements and economic success over merely adhering to societal norms and increasing their social status.

At present, this group constitutes about half of North Korea's population, a figure that is projected to surge to over 70% by 2028. This increase hints at the substantial influence they will hold in shaping the nation’s future. They possess a mindset that leans towards the markets and openness, and this could potentially steer the regime in a direction that is more open and accepting of economic reforms.