Author: Dean Alexander

Prof. Jacobijn Gussekloo appointed as ISAP Chair

We are delighted to report that Professor Jacobijn Gussekloo (Leiden University Medical Center) has accepted our invitation to serve as the chair of our International Science Advisory Panel. As Chair, Professor Gussekloo will play a critical role in 2018 as Ageing Well makes it case to the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment for a second tranche of government research funding (NZ$20 million).

Professor Gussekloo is a distinguished academic. Originally trained as a General Practitioner, she currently serves as Professor of Primary Care at Leiden University Medical Center. She is the chair (or a member) of numerous medical and research organisations, has held (and currently holds) multiple research grants, and has authored over 200 research outputs.

You can find out more about Prof. Gussekloo here:

Filed under: Our people

Inaugural Research Impact Conference a Roaring Success

Over one hundred academics, researchers, policymakers and stakeholders gathered in Dunedin this month to discuss, debate and learn about meaningful research impact. Realising the Potential, a conference organised jointly by Ageing Well, CHARR, and CARE, explored how best to reap the rewards of scientific research so that it yields profitiable results for our end users.

Held at the Dunedin Public Art Gallery from 21-22 November, the conference examined impact from many angles. International keynote speakers described best practice; academics and stakeholders illustrated successful models of collaboration and community engagement; and interactive workshops offered attendees the chance to think about achieving impact, whether that be through the commercialisation of research, influencing policy change, or delivering new health care into our communities. The final session of the conference, a panel discussion between the three health-related National Science Challenges (Ageing Well, A Better Start, and Healthier Lives), looked at how researchers are proactively engaging with Māori communities.

Overall, the Research Impact Conference was a wonderful event that allowed everyone involved in, and who uses and benefits from, research to go away with a better understanding of how to realise the potential of research so that it be put to work to measurably and meaningfully improve New Zealand. (We will bring our readers a more detailed summary of the conference on our website and in a later Newsletter.)
21-22 November 2017
Conference Room | Dunedin Public Art Gallery | 30 The Octagon | Dunedin

Who will benefit from attending?
Those working in NGOs, research funding organisations, not-for-profits, the health

and technology industry, programme management and evaluation, knowledge translation, government research and development, academia, and research institutes.

What can participants hope to gain?
Increased knowledge and skills on how to design, plan, manage, measure, communicate and optimise research impact. The focus will be on biomedical and health sciences.

Participants will improve their understanding of some existing frameworks, tools, approaches, and knowledge about research impact and its assessment with leading international experts.

There will be an opportunity to hear examples and share experiences for establishing collaborations between stakeholders, researchers, community service and health providers, and policy makers.

This interactive conference offers an opportunity to network and exchange ideas and best practices with international experts, peers, stakeholders, and end-users of health research.

More information:

Poster: Research Impact Conference

Filed under: Events, Research

Ageing Well holds fruitful Annual Symposium in Dunedin

On Tuesday 21 November, Ageing Well held its annual Symposium in Dunedin. Our entire team –members of the Governance Group, Strategic Advisory Group (formerly known as the SLT), Principal Investigators, and the Directorate – gathered together to receive project updates and plan for the future. Our 14 Principal Investigators (or their surrogates) presented brief updates on their projects outlining their progress to date, the challenges and opportunities they had encountered, and their achievements. It was exciting to hear about successful patient outcomes, stakeholder engagement, or journal publications that demonstrate the strength of our Challenge. The symposium also offered the chance to engage in a productive discussion about the future direction of Ageing Well, particularly as we build our case for Tranche 2 funding.


Filed under: Events, Research

Life When Renting Summit

‘How do we generate a rental sector and rental stock that is responsive to older tenants? ‘ was the theme of the summit held on 30 May 2017 in Tauranga.  Over 60 people attended, including older people and others from a wide range of organisations from the Bay of Plenty, Hamilton, Auckland, Wellington and Marlborough.  The summit was an opportunity to report back on early findings. The highlight of the lively day was the guest address by Dr Rob Wiener, Executive Director of California Coalition for Rural Housing and Continuing Lecturer in community and regional development at the University of California, Davis. Rob presented four best practice case studies of Californian rental housing for very low-income older people, on  universal design and adaptability, services and amenities enriched housing, intergenerational housing and housing for special-needs seniors. The other presenters included:
  • Dr Natalie Jackson’s cohort analysis of changes in home ownership and renting based on census data from 1986-2013 showed the clear decline in home ownership and rise in renting in every territorial authority area.
  • Professor Jackie Cumming Dr Janet McDonald and Megan Pledger’s analysis of NZ Health Survey data showed older renters are more likely than older home owners to report poorer mental and physical health.
  • Bev James, Prof Robin Kearns and his team, Dr. Fiona Cram and Dr. Elsie Ho reported on interviews with older renters and service providers in Tauranga, Western Bay of Plenty and Auckland. Early findings are that moving from home-ownership to renting is common, often due to financial or personal ‘shocks’. Most rent from private landlords, are on limited, fixed incomes and rely on the Accommodation Supplement to assist with their housing costs.
  • Fiona’s work with kaumātua highlighted their input into designing papakainga housing and the use of innovative lifetime design.
  • Elsie noted the importance of cultural concepts of elder care, as well as older Asians’ appreciation of living close to services, public transport and family.
  • Kay Saville-Smith talked about the challenges and opportunities the ageing population pose for landlords. Many landlords are not aware of the demand for housing from older tenants, the subsidies available to assist older tenants, and how landlords might be able to work together with service providers.
Adrienne von Tunzelmann, member of the Ageing Well Governance group, closed the summit, setting the research in the context of Ageing Well National Science Challenge. She congratulated the Tauranga/Western Bay of Plenty community on leading the way in contributing to and leveraging from the Challenge. The summit was supported by Priority One, the Population Ageing Technical Advisory Group (PATAG) and Smartgrowth. The Life When Renting team has prepared six working papers for PATAG, available on Presentations from the summit will be available on or you can  directly contact Nina: for copies of the presentations.
Filed under: Events, Research

Age CARE: Planning for an Ageing Population

Ageing Well’s Deputy Director, Associate Professor Debra Waters, was featured in April’s edition of the University of Otago Magazine (Issue 44).

Read the full story, which discusses Waters’ role as Director of CARE (Collaboration of Ageing Research Excellence) here.

Filed under: Press