Old age and the city. Social change, ageing and old age in an urban environment
Division of Social Ecology National Laboratory of Civik Engineering Lisbon, Portugal
The scientific concern of the paper is to render the ageing process of the Lisbon population and the social conditions of old age within this context more intelligible, by delving into the social change factors attached to it. The initial question mirrors this concern: how are social changes suffered by the Portuguese society and leading to the ageing of its population and to a change in the social position of the elderly reflected in the City?
The theoretical assumption underlying the research postulates that the ageing process of societies is currently an element that generates uncertainty in present times and a risk generating factor for future societies.
The paper puts forward a multifarious proposal to describe the social framework of ageing and of old age in the city of Lisbon. Several syntagmatic axis illustrating the relationship between the elderly and the City are equally presented. It is an interpretation puzzle on social change and on how the latter is shown by this urban territory, particularly in the aspects immediately associated to the residing elderly population.
The results stress the singularity of the ageing phenomena of the Lisbon population and identify a social framework that will eventually require new social and technical responses to mitigate the risks deriving from ageing in the city.
Some cross-national figures are presented to demonstrate the effectiveness of the urban agieng process in the european countries.