Throughout the world we are seeing ageing populations and an increase in the number of people living in cities.
November 2013 - July 2015
Developing age-friendly Towns and Cities: phase 2
Research Team: Dr Louise Lafortune, Dr Stefanie Buckner, Dr Calum Mattocks, Melanie Rimmer, Dr Daniel Pope and Professor Nigel Bruce
Who's involved: University of Cambridge, LiLaC & University of Sheffield
January 2016 - March 2017
The World Health Organisation describes an Age-friendly City or Community as a place where “the physical and social environment are designed to support and enable older people to “age actively” – that is, to live in security, enjoy good health and continue to participate fully in society.”
This research followed on from a previous SPHR project where a new method was developed to assess how ‘age-friendly’ cities and communities were. This project tested and refined the new assessment method, known as an evaluation tool.
To carry out the project researchers consulted a number of representatives from a range of cities to find a suitable place to test the evaluation tool. As a result the City of Sheffield and the new town development of Northstowe, just to the North of Cambridge were selected.
In Sheffield, researchers and a local steering group decided to focus on the City’s dementia-friendly activities. The steering group which included local professionals, volunteers and older residents provided the research team with documents and other information that could be use to assess how well the City was doing regarding its dementia-friendliness.
Researchers found that overall, Sheffield did well in several areas of dementia friendliness. The cities provision of services for people living with dementia and how they involved people affected by dementia in the decision making process was rated excellent. However, some areas of improvement were identified including the allocation of of resources for dementia-friendly initiatives.
In Northstowe, which has not yet been built, researchers advised he designers and planners on how the town could be developed so that it was a welcoming place for older people to live or visit. This resulted in changes being made to the Design Code – the planning document that sets out the physical structures of the development. SPHR’s advice helped to convince the developers to agree to install more benches in public places so that they will be more accessible for older people.
Stefanie Buckner, Calum Mattocks, Melanie Rimmer, Louise Lafortune. An evaluation tool for Age-Friendly and Dementia Friendly Communities. Working With Older People (2017).
Stefanie Buckner, Daniel Pope, Calum Mattocks, Louise Lafortune, Mukesh Dherani, Nigel Bruce. Developing Age-Friendly Cities: an Evidence-Based Evaluation Tool
Population Ageing (2017).
Stefanie Buckner, Calum Mattocks, Louise Lafortune, Melanie Rimmer, Daniel Pope, Nigel Bruce. Unlocking the benefits of Age-Friendly Cities. National Health Executive (2017).
Sara Ronzi, Daniel Pope, Lois Orton, Nigel Bruce. Using photovoice methods to explore older people’s perceptions of respect and social inclusion in cities: Opportunities, challenges and solutions. SSM- Population Health (2016).