A Research Agenda for Opportunities of Rising Longevity and Developing Long-Term Care Systems

International seminar


Sarah Harper, University of Oxford, Oxford Institute of Population Ageing, UK

Yanan Zhang, Oxford Institute of Population Ageing, UK

Giovanni Lamura, Centre for Socio-Economic Research on Ageing, National Institute of Health and Science on Ageing, Ancona, Italy

Henk Nies, Vrije University in Amsterdam, the Netherlands


In our series of international seminars discussing ‘A Research Agenda for Ageing and Social Policy’, this online event highlighted another two key issues of ageing and social policy - on the one hand, the myth of the demographic deficit was challenged by Sarah Harper and Yanan Zhang, on the other hand, Giovanni Lamura and Henk Nies highlighted the research needs in the area of long-term care. 

Sarah Harper and Yanan Zhang provided evidence for the opportunities of rising longevity and dynamic changes in health from a European and Asian perspective – these opportunities, however, need to be underpinned by social policies that are reframed in an age-inclusive manner and empower the wider community through intergenerational programmes.

Giovanni Lamura and Henk Nies offered an overview of the emerging issues in long-term care, which is still an underresearched field. Analysing both the supply and the demand side, the authors identifyed a vast number of challenges but also opportunities and solutions that should inform the emerging policies to enhance long-term care systems across the globe.


Sarah Harper CBE is Clore Professor of Gerontology at the University of Oxford, and Director of the Oxford Institute of Population Ageing, UK. She advises the UK government on ageing issues and was appointed a CBE for services to Demography in 2018. She has a background in anthropology and population studies. Her current research on demographic change addresses two broad questions: the impact of falling fertility and increasing life expectancy, and the interaction of population change with the environment.

Yanan Zhang has a PhD in Economics and is a Research Fellow at the Oxford Institute of Population Ageing, UK. She conducts research on the costs of social care in terms of economy, health and well-being, and develops evidence frames for positive interventions in support of population ageing. She has a special interest in China.

Giovanni Lamura leads the Centre for Socio-Economic Research on Ageing at INRCA IRCCS, Italy’s National Institute of Health and Science on Ageing. He graduated in economics, achieved a PhD in ‘Life course and social policy’ (University of Bremen, Germany), and was visiting fellow at University of Hamburg-Eppendorf (Germany) and the European Centre for Social Welfare Policy & Research (Austria). His research interests are in international research on family and long-term care, migrant care work and interdisciplinary research on ageing.

Henk Nies is Endowed Professor of Policy and Organisation Development in Long-term Care at the Vrije University in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. He graduated in Psychogerontology with a thesis on ‘Policy research in care for older people’. For a large part of his career, he was on the Executive Board of Vilans, the Netherlands’ Centre of Expertise for Long-term Care. His research interests are care workers, quality management, integrated care, the cooperation of formal and informal carers, and support for people with dementia.


International seminar
12:00 - 13:30