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Commentary: The Emergence and Application of Active Aging in Europe

Commentary: The Emergence and Application of Active Aging in Europe Active aging is established as the leading global policy strategy in response to population aging. In practice, however, the term active aging serves as a convenient shelter for a wide range of policy discourses and initiatives concerning demographic change. The twin purposes of this article are, first, to examine its European origins and how it has been applied in the world's oldest region. This policy analysis illustrates the contrast between the primarily European discourse on active aging, which emphasizes health, participation, and well-being, and the U.S. discourse that prioritizes productivity. The application of active aging in Europe has, nonetheless, been predominantly in the productivist mold. The examination of the emergence of this key policy concept in Europe is contextualized by an outline of the changing politics of aging in this region. The second purpose of the article is to set out a new, comprehensive strategy on active aging that is intended to realize the full potential of the concept. Understanding of the need for this broad vision of active aging is facilitated by the historical policy review. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal Of Aging & Social Policy Taylor & Francis

Commentary: The Emergence and Application of Active Aging in Europe

Journal Of Aging & Social Policy , Volume 21 (1): 19 – Dec 30, 2008
19 pages

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References (51)

Publisher
Taylor & Francis
Copyright
Copyright Taylor & Francis Group, LLC
ISSN
1545-0821
eISSN
0895-9420
DOI
10.1080/08959420802529986
pmid
19197609
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Active aging is established as the leading global policy strategy in response to population aging. In practice, however, the term active aging serves as a convenient shelter for a wide range of policy discourses and initiatives concerning demographic change. The twin purposes of this article are, first, to examine its European origins and how it has been applied in the world's oldest region. This policy analysis illustrates the contrast between the primarily European discourse on active aging, which emphasizes health, participation, and well-being, and the U.S. discourse that prioritizes productivity. The application of active aging in Europe has, nonetheless, been predominantly in the productivist mold. The examination of the emergence of this key policy concept in Europe is contextualized by an outline of the changing politics of aging in this region. The second purpose of the article is to set out a new, comprehensive strategy on active aging that is intended to realize the full potential of the concept. Understanding of the need for this broad vision of active aging is facilitated by the historical policy review.

Journal

Journal Of Aging & Social PolicyTaylor & Francis

Published: Dec 30, 2008

Keywords: active aging (or ageing); aging policy; European union; politics; well-being

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