Advance long and productive lives

WP8Increased automation and longevity demand new thinking by employers and employees regarding productivity. Young people are increasingly disconnected from education or work and the labor force faces significant retirements in the next decades. Throughout the lifespan, fuller engagement in education and paid and unpaid productive activities can generate a wealth of benefits, including better health and well-being, greater financial security, and a more vital society.

Network Co-Leads to Advance Long and Productive Lives: Nancy Morrow-Howell and Guillermo Ernest Gonzales.

Our Leadership Working Teams

  • Jackie James: Team Leader for Employment
  • Christina Matz-Costa: Team Leader for Volunteering


Morrow-Howell, N., Gonzales, E., Harootyan, B., Lee, Y. J. & Lindberg, B. (2016). Approaches, Policies, and Practices to Support the Productive Engagement of Older Adults. Journal of Gerontological Social Work

Policy Action Statement

“Advance long and productive lives.” Actions target expansion of paid family and medical leave.

Upcoming Symposiums & Abstracts

Gonzales, E. & Harootyan, B. Chairs. Raising Awareness about Health Equity, Productive Aging, and At-Risk Older Adults. Symposium presented at the International Association for Gerontology and Geriatrics, San Francisco, CA, on July 27, 2017 at 10:00 AM – 11:30 AM, location TBA

Wang, Y. Gonzales, E., Shen, H. & Perry, T. E. Does Volunteering Buffer Health During the Relocation Process? A Propensity Score Analysis. Paper presented at the International Association for Gerontology and Geriatrics, San Francisco, CA, on July 27, 2017 at 8:00 AM – 9:30 AM, location TBA.

More About This Challenge:

Population aging is among the most profound transformations in all of human history. Life expectancy has more than tripled, with most of that extension coming in the last century. This demographic shift is very rapid. In the United States, the number of people over the age of 65 will double between 2000 and 2030, with the number of people over 85 growing the fastest. This demographic revolution presents many grand challenges and opportunities. Our challenge is to reshape social expectations, institutions, policies, and programs to nurture and engage the growing human, social, and cultural capital of the older population to meet the demands posed by an aging society. This new paradigm rebuts longstanding and misguided assumptions that older adults are a burden and incapable of contributing to society. When viewed from an assets and strengths-based perspective, older adults can be part of the solution to longstanding social problems. Join our team and help make a difference.