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The University of Southampton
The India Centre for Inclusive Growth and Sustainable Development

Population Ageing in India

 

Today, globally, there are just under one billion people aged 60 and over. Of these, around 120 million live in India and a further 225 million live in China, with the two countries alone accounting for over a third of all older people alive today. Furthermore, the population of older people is set to increase rapidly over the next decade and by 2030 it is estimated that there will be around 190 million people aged 60 and over living in India and 362 million in China, with some regions at risk of ‘growing old before they grow rich’, as the expansion of the older population precedes advances in economic and social development. Therefore, understanding the challenges and opportunities of an ageing population in the two most populous countries of the world is of key significance for policymakers, practitioners and planners alike.

Smiling Indians looking at laptop
Rural India Wifi

The Centre for Research on Ageing (CRA) at the University of Southampton is playing an active part in contributing to the evidence base through partnerships with leading centres of excellence in India and China. Staff in CRA and Social Sciences collaborated with colleagues from the Population Research Centre at the Institute of Social and Economic Change, Bangalore; the Centre for Development Studies, Trivandrum, India; and the Population Research Centre, University of Groningen, The Netherlands to establish the AgeGlobe Network.

This interdisciplinary international network was funded in 2012 by ESRC, Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) and the Indian Council for Social Science Research.

A particular focus of the Network has been on understanding the experience of ageing and the exchange of care in the context of global migration, investigating the well-being of individuals ‘left behind’, with research examining the extent of intergenerational exchanges and the spread of health vulnerabilities between family generations, particularly in co-residential households.

Globally, the family remains the key source of support for social care in later life. However, with increasing numbers of women particularly, in paid jobs and higher levels of migration, traditional systems of family support are coming under pressure.

Long-term care 

The CRA, led by Professor Maria Evandrou from the University of Southampton, was successful in being awarded funding in 2016 under the UKRI Global Challenges Research Fund to extend its previous research, bringing in new partners in India, China and Africa to establish the Global Ageing and Long-term Care Network (GALNet).

GALNet has held three workshops with the first, hosted by the Africa Population & Health Research Centre, Nairobi, focusing on understanding realities of, and need for, longterm care. The second workshop, focusing on examining alternative models of long-term care, took place in Hyderabad, hosted by the Tata Institute for Social Sciences; whilst the third workshop, focusing on policy choices, was organised by the Institute of Gerontology at Renmin University in Beijing.

Through these workshops, GALNet has facilitated the sharing of insights into the factors underpinning the need for, and presenting the realities of, long-term care and how these might vary across different social groups. It has also provided valuable opportunities to discuss alternative models for long-term care from different sources and the balance between unpaid care provided by family members, and formal support provided by the state or Non-Governmental Organisations or purchased through the private sector.

For futher information visit the Gerontology site
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