Ageing science, health care and social inclusion of older people

Joanna Latimer*, Terence Davis, Mark C. Bagley, David Kipling

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In this paper we present preliminary findings from a study of the social, ethical and cultural aspects of ageing science and medicine. The paper draws on a collaborative, ongoing project between life scientists and sociologists, funded by the Economic and Social Research Council's (ESRC) New Dynamics of Ageing Programme1 and the ESRC Centre for the Economic and Social Aspects of Genomics2. The sociological element of this project involves participant observation and interviews with expert scientists who specialise in ageing and age-related diseases, both in the UK and the US, as well as interviews with sceptics of ageing science and medicine. There has been much critique of how ageing science is anti-ageing, reinforcing the ageism prevalent in Western culture. Our specific objective in this paper is to suggest how biogerontology can contribute to the social inclusion of older people, particularly in relation to health care. We discuss how agesim is endemic to some aspects of health care, and go on to show how the ways that biogerontology is reconceptualising what it is to age, and to be old, can help reinclude ageing and the aged in health-care education, policy and practice.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)11-16
Number of pages6
JournalQuality in Ageing and Older Adults
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2011


  • Ageing science
  • Ageism
  • Biogerontology
  • Health care
  • Older people
  • Social inclusion

Cite this