The oldest members are in the process of graduating from university and entering the workforce.

But is their city ready for a digital native born into a climate crisis whose biggest values include diversity, the right to protest and autonomy?

Enter Generation Z.

They were born between 1997 and 2012 (aged seven-22) and the world has not seen a generation quite like it.

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A new index rates 110 cities worldwide on how they cater to them.

Twenty-two indicators were based on four broad categories: digital, principals, leisure and business.

The top five cities overall were London, Stockholm, Los Angeles, Toronto and New York. The bottom were Lagos, Casablanca, Muscat, Jakarta and New Delhi.

Generation Z-er Malala Yousafza was shot by the Taliban after fighting for the right for women to have an education. Photo / Getty
Generation Z-er Malala Yousafza was shot by the Taliban after fighting for the right for women to have an education. Photo / Getty

Auckland ranked 37th, while Wellington was 52nd. But they scored much higher (and much lower) in certain areas when it was broken down by indicators.

Both cities topped the board along with 11 other cities when it came to our rights to protest without fear of retaliation and were third equal for cashless payments. Wellington came second when it came to safety and both cities were within the top 10 for gender equality.

But there is work to be done around LGBTQI+ rights and access to mental health care. Our entertainment options were also lacking.

Auckland's worst-rated indicator was affordability while Wellington's was concerts, or lack thereof.

Some of the data - collated by Nestpick, an apartment service for expats and students relocating to unfamiliar cities - was measured at a national level so the cities scored the same.

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"Interestingly, despite the uncertainty surrounding Brexit and the high costs of living, our research has found that London ranks first overall," says Ömer Kücükdere, chief executive of Nestpick.com.

"Adding on to the advantages of a weakening pound, London has shown how it is at the forefront of digitalisation, advocacy, entertainment, and business."

Swedish student Greta Thunberg lead a school strike on climate change. Photo / Getty
Swedish student Greta Thunberg lead a school strike on climate change. Photo / Getty

He says Gen Z-ers like Malala Yousafzai - shot by the Taliban for fighting for the right to an education - and Greta Thunberg - who at 15 sat in front of the Swedish parliament every schoolday for three weeks to protest against the lack of action on the climate crisis - were molding the narrative of their generation.

"Recognising their voices, it is prime time we reflect upon ourselves, empathise with their concerns, and  act on them. Many of us remember a time when the job market was booming or when using a single-use plastic bag didn't give you a guilty conscience.

"For Generation Z, however, being concerned about the economic and environmental future was something conditioned from birth."

To continue attracting talented, young individuals, public officials need to take action to address their concerns or risk losing them, he says.

"The emergence of a new generation presents strong opportunities for both innovation and the economy, however, this requires cities and industries to be both adaptable and responsive. Having done so with the rise of the millennials, it is time for both the public and private sectors to prepare for Generation Z."

Sharing economy

Lime scooters. Photo / Michael Craig
Lime scooters. Photo / Michael Craig

How we rated:

Auckland: 65
Wellington: 23

Uber, Lime scooters and Cityhop - New Zealand has embraced the sharing economy with gusto although it seems nowhere near as much as Paris, Bern, Shanghai and Amsterdam. The measure focused on shared mobility services such as bike-sharing and ride-hailing.

Read more: Meet the people who share everything

An Uber Eats courier. Photo / Getty
An Uber Eats courier. Photo / Getty

Social media habits

Kiwis are social media fiends. Photo / AP
Kiwis are social media fiends. Photo / AP

How we rated:

Auckland: 13=
Wellington: 13=

Kiwis are social media fiends, with Auckland and Wellington within the top 20 when it came to how much time we spent on sites like Facebook and Instagram as well as the percentage of residents using digital services to manage daily life events and stay informed.

Dubai topped the board followed by the nearby Bahrain city of Manama and Doha in Qatar.

Education

Auckland and Wellington were well down the list for education. Photo / File
Auckland and Wellington were well down the list for education. Photo / File

How we rated:

Auckland: 50
Wellington: 77

The index looked at the number of universities which offered degrees in computer science, technology, and innovation-focused programmes within a 200km radius of a city centre.

Boston, London and Los Angeles topped the board.

Internationalism

Members of the Manurewa High School Filipino group perform at the ASB Polyfest at the Manukau Sports Bowl in March. Photo / Jason Oxenham
Members of the Manurewa High School Filipino group perform at the ASB Polyfest at the Manukau Sports Bowl in March. Photo / Jason Oxenham

How we rated:

Auckland: 8
Wellington: 21

It's no surprise the multicultural metropolis that is Auckland scored within the top 10 for cities with the biggest percentages of foreign-born citizens. According to the latest Statistics NZ figures, the city is made up of 59.3 per cent European, 23.1 per cent Asian, 14.6 per cent Pacific, 10.7 per cent Māori and 1.9 per cent Middle Eastern, Latin American and African.

Dubai topped the board followed by, Manama and Doha.

Gender equality

We were the first to get women the vote 125 years ago, but our pay equality is still a national shame. Photo / File
We were the first to get women the vote 125 years ago, but our pay equality is still a national shame. Photo / File

How we rated:

Auckland: 4=
Wellington: 4=

We were the first to get women the vote 126 years ago, but our pay equality is still a national shame. Stats NZ research last month showed women were being paid on average 9.3 per cent less than men. Women's' hourly earnings were $24.50 in June compared with $27 for men.

But it appears other cities were much worse.

Auckland and Wellington sat behind only two Norwegian cities in the top slot, three Swedish cities at second, and Helsinki in Finland in third place.

The index looked at data on health, political empowerment, educational attainment and economic opportunity.

Read more: Government urged to address pay secrecy in bid to fix gender pay gap

LGBTQI equality

The Big Gay Out at Coyle Park, Pt Chevalier in 2017. Photo / Dean Purcell
The Big Gay Out at Coyle Park, Pt Chevalier in 2017. Photo / Dean Purcell

How we rated:

Auckland: 48
Wellington: 45

The measure of the cities' acceptance towards the LGBTQI community at a social and legislative level is shameful.

We may have legalised gay marriage 15 years ago but there is obviously more work to be done.

Madrid, Helsinki and Barcelona came up tops.

Affordability

Auckland's house prices prices might be falling but living costs are still high. Photo / Doug Sherring
Auckland's house prices prices might be falling but living costs are still high. Photo / Doug Sherring

How we rated:

Auckland: 79
Wellington: 62

Our house prices might be falling (Auckland's median was $830,000 last month) but other costs of living are astronomically high compared to other cities.

This was Auckland's worst-rated indicator. The city sat between Lyon in France and Jerusalem in Israel.

New Delhi, and the Colombian cities of Medellin and Bogota took out the top spots.

The score was based on the cost of living per month.

Read more: First-home buyer hotspots: Where to buy

Environmental action

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Greens co-leader James Shaw, announcing last year the government is ending all future offshore oil and gas exploration. Photo / Mark Mitchell
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Greens co-leader James Shaw, announcing last year the government is ending all future offshore oil and gas exploration. Photo / Mark Mitchell

How we rated:

Auckland: 10=
Wellington: 10=

The New Zealand cities have lived up to their clean, green image - although not as well as Stockholm, Zurich and Gothenburg.

The performance of government initiatives to promote sustainability and environmental health, as well as the annual mean air quality was looked at.

Read more: The first project in the Government's $12 million clean waterways fund

Access to mental health:

Comedian and mental health campaigner Mike King. Photo / Michael Craig
Comedian and mental health campaigner Mike King. Photo / Michael Craig

How we rated:

Auckland: 23=
Wellington: 26=

Our suicide rates are worse than they have been since records began 12 years ago. There were 685 in the year to June 30 - 17 more than last year, when there were 668.

And according to the measure, the accessibility and effectiveness of our government in implementing mental health policies caring for those affected and assisting their integration into society is lacking.

The Government announced this week it will set up an office dedicated to reducing suicide rates.

Bergen and Oslo in Norway topped the board, followed by Hamburg.

Access to healthcare

Focus Live Earlier: PM Jacinda Ardern announces new cancer initiative

How we rated:

Auckland: 34=
Wellington: 34=

New Zealand has long suffered from a "postcode lottery" - where patients have different access to treatment depending where they live.

The index looked at access to quality healthcare services, cost and outcomes.

The Government is hoping its cancer plan announced two weeks ago - which includes establishing a national cancer agency and a $60 million injection into Pharmac - will tackle our nation's biggest killer.

Again Oslo and Bergen did the best, followed by Rotterdam in the Netherlands.

Safety

Wellington residents apparently feel safe walking the streets at night and in their homes. Photo / File
Wellington residents apparently feel safe walking the streets at night and in their homes. Photo / File

How we rated

Auckland: 46
Wellington: 2

Wellington residents apparently feel safe walking the streets at night and in their homes, narrowly missing out on the top spot to Singapore. Auckland, however, has a long way to go before residents will feel safe.

Research released in July by the Parliamentary Library showed Auckland had the second-highest rate of crime (per 10,000 people) in New Zealand, while Wellington had the 10th.

Police district crime rates (recorded offences per 10,000 people) in 1994, 2004 and 2014. Source / Parliamentary library
Police district crime rates (recorded offences per 10,000 people) in 1994, 2004 and 2014. Source / Parliamentary library

Nationally, in the year to July, there were 49,015 burglaries of a residential property and 16,087 assaults resulting in injuries (up 32.6 per cent).

The score includes aspects such as personal and infrastructural security, as well as perceived safety by individuals.

Right to protest:

Students on Queen St in Auckland's CBD during a march to gain awareness around climate change action in May. Photo / Peter Meecham
Students on Queen St in Auckland's CBD during a march to gain awareness around climate change action in May. Photo / Peter Meecham

How we rated:

Auckland: 1=
Wellington: 1=

The faces of our youngest generation during the nationwide climate change protests in March confirmed that New Zealand was a place where our youngest generation have the right to be heard.

Kapiti teenager Sophie Handford - who is standing for her local council in the Paekakariki-Raumati ward - was inspired by the student climate strikers in Europe and Australia and decided Aotearoa needed to follow suit. Twenty thousand young people took part. A follow up strike was held in May and another is planned for two weeks' time.

The Gen Z measure - based on the 2019 Global Peace Index - looked at the freedom of residents to assemble and organise without fear of retaliation. It looked at the existence of legislation protecting demonstrators, NGOs and labour/trade unions, and accounted for the degree of violent protests and political terror. Thirteen countries shared the top place with Auckland and Wellington.

Sophie is standing for a seat in the Paekakariki-Raumati ward. Photo / Mark Mitchell
Sophie is standing for a seat in the Paekakariki-Raumati ward. Photo / Mark Mitchell

Sophie says police and council had been "great to deal with" when it came to organising the School Strike 4 Climate. She had worked with them to ensure that everyone attending the rally had "an empowering experience" and were safe.

But the Government needed to do more when it came to climate change.

"The Government has said that this is the year of action and that this is our generation's nuclear free moment. Yet we see emissions continue to rise. Parliament refuses to declare a climate emergency and the continuation of fossil fuel development in Aotearoa, while across the world the climate crisis is unfolding at a terrifying pace.

"If our generation is to have hope for a future worth living in, we need bold leadership now.

"We must stand with our Pacific neighbours who are already facing the loss of their homes, culture and livelihoods as the ocean rises to their doorsteps. It is a great injustice that those on the frontlines of the effects of climate change have done the least to cause it and with New Zealand being a developed nation, we have an obligation to do everything in our power. We can't afford not to. The cost of inaction is our only home, the futures of generations to come and everything we love."

The group's demands included:

• Declare a climate emergency.

"This move will set the narrative for the urgent pace at which we need to act on climate change, and must uphold our democratic values and obligations under Te Tiriti o Waitangi".

• Pass a Zero Carbon Act

It would have cross-party support in an attempt to achieve net zero carbon by 2040.

• End fossil fuels

This includes not granting any extensions of existing permits. This must be paired with Government's investment in renewable energy production and sustainable transport systems to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels, as we know that our economic gain on the basis of these industries is at the expense of homes, history and culture in the Pacific Islands right now, and ultimately the future of life on Earth.

• Investment in building a renewable and regenerative economy

"This means immediate investment in retraining and the provision of alternative jobs in clean, sustainable industries that don't harm the ecosystems on which we depend for survival. This must be done through meaningful partnerships with communities, Tangata Whenua and youth to ensure a just transition and that no one is left behind."

Meet the young Kāpiti woman spearheading New Zealand's part in global strike

Esports

NZ cities didn't rate highly for esports. Photo / File
NZ cities didn't rate highly for esports. Photo / File

How we rated:

Auckland: 38
Wellington: 84

Seoul, Los Angeles and London are apparently the esports hubs of the world.

This score considered the number of major esports tournaments, average maximum internet speed, the number of gaming companies, a city's reputation for being a gaming hub, and the national percentage of global traffic on Steam, a video game digital distribution platform.

Read more: Meet NZ's highest paid gamer

Concerts

Singer Taylor Swift. Photo / AP
Singer Taylor Swift. Photo / AP

How we rated:

Auckland: 72
Wellington: 92

We may attract big names like Taylor Swift and Ed Sheeran but our little corner of the world was no match for the bright lights of London, Tokyo, New York or Paris.

The strength of a city's music scene was based on the number of scheduled gigs within August 2019-2020.

This was Wellington's worst-rated measure. The city sat between Tel Aviv in Israel and Lima in Peru.

Read more: Elton John announces fourth concert on New Zealand tour

Government digitalisation

How we rated:

Auckland: 8=
Wellington: 8=

The score looked at what technology governments provided for the public including online services and investment in telecommunication infrastructure.

Copenhagen in Denmark came up tops followed by four Australian cities in second place: Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Perth

Connectivity/5G

Chief Executive Jason Paris announces the launch of a 5G network on the Vodafone network at Smales Farm, Takapuna. Photo / Will Trafford
Chief Executive Jason Paris announces the launch of a 5G network on the Vodafone network at Smales Farm, Takapuna. Photo / Will Trafford

How we rated:

Auckland: 40
Wellington: 44

The measure looked at the city's average broadband speeds, as well as the availability, trial or planned implementation of 5G services.

Vodafone says it is rolling out 5G, ready to switch it on in December, beating rivals Spark and 2degrees.

Singapore, Seoul and Stockholm were the most advanced in the world.

Digital payment and banking

How we rated:

Auckland: 3=
Wellington: 3=

Only the Swedish cities of Stockholm, Malmo or Gothenburg and Seoul beat the Kiwi cities.

The measure looked at the Government's efforts to enable e-payment options, the prevalence of digital payments and the readiness of a city to embrace cashless transfers.

Entrepreneurial spirit and innovation

How we rated:

Auckland: 67
Wellington: 60

San Francisco, home to the technology hub that is Silicon Valley, was always going to top the list which looked at the ease of starting a business and strength of the existing start-up culture.

Read more: New investment fund to bridge money gap for startups

AI Industry

Kiri, the AI-powered, virtual assistant created by Auckland company FaceMe for Vodafone. Photo / Supplied
Kiri, the AI-powered, virtual assistant created by Auckland company FaceMe for Vodafone. Photo / Supplied

How we rated:

Auckland: 50=
Wellington: 74

The index counted the number of businesses associated with artificial intelligence.

Last year, startup FaceMe provided Vodafone NZ with virtual human helpers for its Auckland stores. If there's a queue to speak to a human assistant, the virtual person at a kiosk fields basic questions.

The company already had an onscreen avatar at Auckland Airport which answered biosecurity questions from travellers in a bid to reduce the workload of airport officials.

But NZ was no match for the tech-savvy cities of San Francisco, London and New York which did best.

Read more: Is Artificial Intelligence outsmarting NZ business?

Digital privacy and security

How we rated:

Auckland: 25=
Wellington: 25=

The index looked at the commitment a government had to protect user privacy and online security. Athens, Prague, and Brno in Czech Republic did best.