The COVID-19 pandemic has illuminated openly ageist discourses which not only negatively impact on older people, but also highlight a frequent failure in policy approaches and public narrative. Old-age is too readily equated with dependency, frailty, and vulnerability, ignoring the diversity of experiences within the older population, both in capability and need. As the population ages, it is ever more critical that we better understand variation in characteristics, behaviours and needs within the older demographic, and challenge ageist discourses.
Funded by The Nuffield Foundation, this project will develop an open access, multidimensional classification of the older population in England at a small area level, enabling more effective service planning and policy development.
We will produce an online open access platform visualising the geodemographic classification of older people in England. This tool will classify areas according to different characteristics of the older population. It will capture information on demographics, socio-economic status, health, consumption pattern and digital use. It will also capture information on pertinent features of the local built and natural environment.
The project will produce an online open access platform visualising the geodemographic classification of older people in England, including interactive maps and pen portraits of the identified clusters.
The project will take place across three work packages: creating the geodemographic classification, ground-truthing, and applying the classification. It will provide a robust account of the social and spatial stratification in the older population nationally, and demonstrate the importance of understanding this stratification for policy. In this project, we will be working with local stakeholders including Liverpool City Council and the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority to showcase how the purpose built classification of older people can support policy development, service planning and retail provision to better meet the needs of our local older population.