Privacy in crisis

Privacy at home is considered a right by 85 per cent of people globally. But privacy is in crisis, according to a new global study from IKEA.

The IKEA Life at Home Report 2019 shines a light on privacy at home. The report involves more than 33,500 people in 35 countries and builds a global picture of what privacy at home looks like, how it is best achieved and what this means for the role of the home in everyday life.

The report discovers that 85 per cent of us believe we have a right to privacy at home, yet 1 in 4 of us are concerned that our privacy needs in the home are not being met. This means there is a “privacy gap” in our life at home – between what we need and what we get, what we say and what we mean.

“Privacy is vital to our wellbeing, but for too many people, it’s increasingly hard to come by. This points to a worrying impact on physical and mental health, given that lots of people are struggling to get the rest, focus, intimacy and freedom that only privacy can provide,” says Katie McCrory, Life at Home Campaign Manager at IKEA.

Privacy at home is not only about being alone or having a lot of space, privacy is always about being yourself.

The stakes are high because privacy is necessary for our overall health and wellbeing. More than 75 per cent of us agrees that privacy is vital for our wellbeing. We need breathing space – either on our own or in moments of intimacy with others – to recharge, to get to know ourselves, and grow as people. Closing the privacy gap will open up the breathing space we need at home to thrive, rather than survive.

“It’s a common misconception that privacy at home means being completely alone or having a lot of space. Our research reveals that while privacy is sometimes about being alone, it’s always about being yourself. The good news is that there are lots of ways, and plenty of places, to feel free from judgement, like singing in the shower, watching a film with a loved one, or just having a nap on the sofa.”

The home is our most reliable ally in creating moments of privacy. Through our annual research, we know life at home better than anyone. We have the knowledge and inspiration to start a conversation – empowering people to close the privacy gap in their own homes and open up more breathing space. So we can help everyone give and receive privacy, and create a better life at home.

The IKEA Life at Home Report builds a global picture of what privacy at home looks like, how it is best achieved, and what this means for the role of the home in everyday life. Read the full report here.