Smart cities for all ages

An older man rides his bicycle along a street. In the background is a brightly coloured mural.We discuss the population ageing as if older people are a problem and a burden. Apart from being an ageist proposition, it does little to change matters. When we talk of “empowering older adults” to engage in active ageing, who took the power away in the first place? Was it the advent of secluded congregate living that seduced older adults into feeling “secure”? Or was it something else? Regardless, research continues on ways to make people “feel capable and safe”. 

An article in The Conversation begins, “Senior citizens need help and encouragement to remain active as they age in their own communities.” It is not clear why this is specific to older people. The article continues to explain how a city can provide digital infrastructure for the local information older people need. Three solutions are proposed for keeping older adults, indeed everyone, active and healthy:

      1. Replace ageism with agency for improved quality of life.
      2. Connect to smart city data to get the right information.
      3. Include co-design in planning for greater participation and inclusion. 

A previous post on Ageing in neighbourhood rather than retirement villages reports a similar approach to population ageing.