Research

 

You will find a complete range of our monographs, muti-authored and edited works including peer-reviewed, original scholarly research across the social sciences and aligned disciplines. We publish long and short form research and you can browse the complete Bristol University Press and Policy Press archive of over 1400 titles.

Policy Press also publishes policy reviews and polemic work which aim to challenge policy and practice in certain fields. These books have a practitioner in mind and are practical, accessible in style, as well as being academically sound and referenced.
 

Books: Research

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Meaning and practice across the lifecourse
Author: Ricca Edmondson

This book focuses on older people as makers of meaning and insight, highlighting the evolving values, priorities and ways of communicating that make later life fascinating. It explores what creating ‘meaning’ in later life really implies, for older people themselves, for how to conceptualise older people and for relationships between generations.

The book offers a language for discussing major types of lifecourse meaning, not least those concerning ethical and temporal aspects of the ways people interpret their lifecourses, the ways older people form part of social and symbolic landscapes, and the types of wisdom they can offer.

It will appeal to students of gerontology, sociological methodology, humanistic sociology, philosophy, psychology, and health promotion and medicine.

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Critical and international approaches

Populations around the globe are ageing rapidly. This demographic shift affects families, market structures and social provisions. This timely volume, part of the Ageing and the Lifecourse series, argues that the lifecourse perspective helps us understand the causes and effects of population ageing. The lifecourse perspective suggests that individuals’ experiences at an early age can influence their decisions and behaviour at a later age. This much-needed volume combines insights from different disciplines and real-life experiences to describe the theories and practices behind this idea. It therefore caters to the needs of scholars, practitioners and policy makers in a range of areas including sociology and political science.

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A Global Challenge

Evidence of widening inequalities in later life raises concerns about the ways in which older adults might experience forms of social exclusion. Such concerns are evident in all societies as they seek to come to terms with the unprecedented ageing of their populations. Taking a broad international perspective, this highly topical book casts light on patterns and processes that either place groups of older adults at risk of exclusion or are conducive to their inclusion.

Leading international experts challenge traditional understandings of exclusion in relation to ageing in From Exclusion to Inclusion in Old Age. They also present new evidence of the interplay between social institutions, policy processes, personal resources and the contexts within which ageing individuals live to show how this shapes inclusion or exclusion in later life. Dealing with topics such as globalisation, age discrimination and human rights, intergenerational relationships, poverty, and migration, the book is essential reading for anyone interested in ageing issues.

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Challenging the constructions of ‘growing old’
Author: Amanda Grenier

Transitions and the life course: Challenging the constructions of ‘growing old’ explores and challenges dominant interpretations of transitions as they relate to ageing and the life course. It takes a unique perspective that draws together ideas about late life as expressed in social policy and socio-cultural constructs of age with lived experience. The book is aimed at academics and students interested in social gerontology, policy studies in health and social care, and older people’s accounts of experience.

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Spiritual pathways in later life

Based on 40 years’ interviewing experience, this book illustrates the variety of religious, spiritual and other beliefs held by older people. It provides models of research procedure, especially in the context of bereavement. Participants include not only British Christians, but also Muslims, Humanists and witnesses of the Soviet persecution of religion. The author argues that both welfare professionals and gerontologists need to pay far more consideration to belief as a constituent of well-being in later life. The book looks to the future and increasing diversity of choice in matters of belief among Britain and Europe’s older citizens as a consequence of immigration and globalisation.

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Learning from older people
Author: Denise Tanner

Current social policy recognises that older people should be treated as experts in their own lives and be actively involved in their care. This book explores what can be learned from older people’s experiences of managing ageing. Direct connections are made between the everyday experiences and perspectives of older people, related research and theoretical perspectives. This yields an engaging and informative analysis of how older people manage the ageing experience and what this means for policy and practice directed at promoting older people’s wellbeing.

The book will be of value to undergraduate and postgraduate students in health and social care and practitioners in these fields.

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Towards social citizenship

Dementia has been widely debated from the perspectives of biomedicine and social psychology. This book broadens the debate to consider the experiences of men and women with dementia from a sociopolitical perspective. It brings to the fore the concept of social citizenship, exploring what it means within the context of dementia and using it to re-examine the issue of rights, status(es), and participation. Most importantly, the book offers fresh and practical insights into how a citizenship framework can be applied in practice. It will be of interest to health and social care professionals, policy makers, academics and researchers and people with dementia and family carers may find it revitalising.

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Family reciprocity from a global perspective
Editor: Misa Izuhara

With socio-economic and demographic changes taking place in contemporary societies, new patterns of family relations are forming partly due to significant family changes, value shifts, precariousness in the labour market, and increasing mobility within and beyond national boundaries.

This book explores the exchange of support between generations and examines variations in contemporary practices and rationales in different regions and societies. It draws on both theoretical perspectives and empirical analysis in relation to new patterns of family reciprocity. Contributors discuss both newly emerging patterns and more established ones which are now being affected due to various opportunities and pressures in contemporary societies.

The book is split into two parts, the first (Chapters one to four) reviews key theoretical and conceptual debates in this field, while the second (Chapter five to nine) offers insights and an understanding of exchange practices based on case studies from different regions and different relationships.

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Place attachment and social exclusion

Many western nations have experienced a rise in the number of marginalised and deprived inner-city neighbourhoods. Despite a plethora of research focused on these areas, there remain few studies that have sought to capture the ‘optimality’ of ageing in place in such places. In particular, little is known about why some older people desire to age in place despite multiple risks in their neighbourhood and why others reject ageing in place. Given the growth in both the ageing of the population and policy interest in the cohesion and sustainability of neighbourhoods there is an urgent need to better understand the experience of ageing in marginalised locations.

This book aims to address the shortfall in knowledge regarding older people’s attachment to deprived neighbourhoods and in so doing progress what critics have referred to as the languishing state of environmental gerontology. The author examines new cross-national research with older people in deprived urban neighbourhoods and suggests a rethinking and refocusing of the older person’s relationship with place. Impact on policy and future research are also discussed.

This book will be relevant to academics, students, architects, city planners and policy makers with an interest in environmental gerontology, social exclusion, urban sustainability and design of the built environment.

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Maintaining quality of life in housing with care settings
Author: Simon Evans

Specialist forms of housing with care are becoming increasingly popular in the United Kingdom, largely as a result of the ageing of the population and the relative wealth of the latest generation of older people. Retirement villages and extra care housing are two models of provision that have seen particularly spectacular growth. This is partly because in many ways they are perceived to promote government agendas for increasing independence and wellbeing for older people. They also aim to meet older people’s aspirations for a good quality of life in their retirement years and to live somewhere they feel they belong. Many such housing developments are marketed as ‘communities of like minded people’, offering security, peace of mind, a range of facilities and new opportunities for friendship and social interaction.

This important book investigates changing concepts and experiences of community across the lifecourse and into older age and how they play out in housing with care settings. An overview of how the housing with care sector has developed, both in the UK and internationally, is provided. The book emphasizes the central importance of a sense of community for older people’s quality of life and explores the impact of a range of factors including social networks, inclusive activities, diversity and the built environment.

The book will be of particular interest to students in the fields of gerontology, social policy, housing, planning, the built environment and community development. It will also appeal to academics, policy makers, practitioners, service providers and researchers, both in the UK and other countries with similar housing with care options, including the USA, Australia and New Zealand.

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