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The role of the elderly as providers and recipients of care

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This chapter discusses the developments, opportunities and challenges for the elderly in light of major recent or forecast trends in family structures and living arrangements, technology, urban planning and welfare state policies. It aims to contribute to the debate on the role of the elderly in family and society in 2030.

The first section presents basic information on demographic ageing in OECD member countries. It familiarises the reader with the role of the elderly as providers and recipients of care in family and society. The second section focuses on developments in family structures, living arrangements and family practice; technology; and urban planning and housing. How do these change the role of the elderly? The third section analyses current family and care policies, their strengths and weaknesses. Future challenges for policy makers are discussed in the fourth section, which considers tight budgets, the conflicting demands of work and family, and social inequality. The last section presents policy implications for the two scenarios, "Golden Age?" and "Back to Basics".

Document Type: Review Article

Publication date: December 1, 2011

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