Ageing & Society. Understanding Vulnerabilities in Old Age

Elisabeth Schröder-ButterfillRuly Marianti
Series: Ageing & Society

Papers from a workshop supported by the Asia-Europe Foundation and the European Alliance for Asian Studies

Understanding vulnerability matters because being vulnerable represents a profoundly undesirable state. People who experience vulnerability in old age are of obvious humanitarian concern, as their insecurity and heightened exposure to certain threats is likely to be compounded by reduced capacities for coping independently. Comprehension of the causes and consequences of vulnerability is important for the development of social policies as it indicates ways of avoiding and alleviating bad outcomes. Policies which have the concept of vulnerability at their heart encourage the development of preventive and targeted measures, which is crucial in conditions of financial constraints and competing demands. By studying vulnerability we investigate processes of relative disadvantage or exclusion and, for purposes of comparison, absolute differences in socio-economic or policy context can be set aside. This makes the study of vulnerability particularly germane to cross-cultural and cross-national research on old-age and elderly support.

Ageing & Society is an interdisciplinary and international journal devoted to publishing papers on the understanding of human ageing and the circumstances of older people in their social and cultural contexts. It draws contributions and readers from many and diverse academic disciplines. In addition to original articles, Ageing & Society has an extensive book review section, and publishes occasional review symposia and special issues.

The Journal of The Centre for Policy on Ageing and The British Society of Gerontology