There was research published last month that suggested the current crop of youngsters were more callous, selfish and inhumane than previous generations, but after other scientists took a close look at the data they discovered that wasn't really the case.
Mind - A Snapshot of a Generation May Come Out Blurry - NYTimes.com
In short: Generation Y’s collective personality, if such a thing exists, is not likely to be much different from other generations’. Still, small differences may matter, and there is some agreement in findings from psychologists on both sides of this debate. In his own research, Dr. Terracciano has found a slight decrease in trust over the generations and a slight increase in a something called “ascendancy,” or “competence” — a self-professed confidence in getting things done.
This trait is similar to one measured by a widely used questionnaire called the Narcissistic Personality Inventory, which asks people whether they agree with statements like “I will be a success” and “I always know what I’m doing.” This test is not a diagnostic tool for narcissistic personality disorder, a serious psychiatric condition; it is simply a rough gauge of self-confidence, vanity, and self-importance, traits everyone has to some degree. And scores have gone up significantly, at least in some college samples.
“This is particularly true in women,” Dr. Twenge. “That is where we see the most dramatic increases.”