Active and healthy ageing in urban environments: laying the groundwork for solution-building through citizen science

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Abstract

Urban age-friendly initiatives strive to promote active and healthy ageing by addressing urban influences that impact individuals as they age. Collaborative community partnerships with multi-level stakeholders are crucial for fostering age-friendly initiatives that can transform urban community health. Employing a citizen social science (CSS) approach, this study aimed to engage older adults and stakeholders in Birmingham, UK, to (i) identify key urban barriers and facilitators to active and healthy ageing, and (ii) facilitate collaboration and knowledge production to lay the groundwork for a citizen science project. Older adults (n = 16; mean age = 72(7.5 SD); 11 female) and community stakeholders (n = 11; 7 female) were engaged in six online group discussions, with audio recordings transcribed and thematically analysed to present key urban barrier and facilitator themes. Ageism, winter, technology and safety were barriers identified by both groups. Outdoor spaces and infrastructure, transportation, community facilities, and Covid-19 pandemic were identified as barriers and/or facilitators. Older adults identified the ageing process as a barrier and diversity of the city, health and mobility and technology as facilitators. For stakeholders, barriers were deprivation and poverty, gender differences, and ethnicity, whereas age-inclusive activities were a facilitator. Organic and active opportunities for older adults and stakeholders to connect, co-produce knowledge on urban environments and share resources presented foundations of solution-building and future collaboration. CSS effectively facilitated a range of stakeholders across local urban spaces to collaborate and co-produce ideas and solutions for enhancing local urban environments to promote active and healthy ageing.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberdaac126
Pages (from-to)1-13
Number of pages13
JournalHealth Promotion International
Volume37
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 14 Sept 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2022. Published by Oxford University Press.

Keywords

  • COVID-19/prevention & control
  • Citizen Science
  • Female
  • Healthy Aging
  • Humans
  • Pandemics
  • Transportation
  • well-being
  • citizen social science
  • older adults
  • age-friendly
  • urban health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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