Research

The Ageing Well Challenge plans to create New Zealand-specific interventions, technology, policy and environments that support active ageing.

The World Health Organisation defines active ageing as the process of optimising opportunities for health, participation and security in order to enhance quality of life as people age. Appropriate housing, food, and health and social services are an essential part of this.

The Challenge has identified five research strands that will build the evidence base for the policies, technologies and interventions that are needed to achieve active ageing:

  • Maintain wellness, independence and autonomy
  • Promote social integration and engagement
  • Value older people in all settings
  • Reduce disability and the impact of disability
  • Enhance age-friendly environments

In the short term, the work that has been prioritised by the Challenge will deliver evidence in areas where significant gains can be made.

Ageing Well Funded Projects

Our research projects are now getting underway. Each will make an important contribution to us realising our vision and mission. The first research results are expected from late 2016.

Core research projects that are funded by the Ageing Well National Science Challenge include the following:

Ageing Well high-level impacts

The high-level impacts from the research by Ageing Well will be:

  • By 2025, national debate stimulated by Ageing Well research and associated stakeholder and public engagement has led to the development of a new government strategy to support maintenance of health and wellbeing of older New Zealanders.
  • By 2025, local bodies across New Zealand recognise, and have incorporated into planning documents, the importance of age-friendly environments that facilitate engagement and participation by older New Zealanders and value their contributions to society and the economy.
  • By 2025, the health and disability support needs of older Māori and their whanau, and Pacific peoples will be met by appropriate, integrated health care and disability support services
  • Ageing Well will develop transformative approaches to reducing the stark inequities in health and wellness outcomes that still exist for older Māori and Pacific people, leading to a narrowing of the outcome gaps. The Challenge-derived approaches will be championed by key District Health Boards, before uptake nationally.
  • By 2025, affordable housing strategies will have been introduced, that facilitate ageing in place, access to home equity and market diversity in housing options, as well as making available resources to assist older people make modifications to support timely planning for ageing in place.
  • The work of the Ageing Well will deliver a relative reduction of people in residential care facilities in New Zealand, resulting from both reduced frailty and impact from debilitating conditions, and from innovative approaches to support ageing in place