Ageing in Asia: Facing the Crossroads
Three broad factors bring Asia to an interesting crossroads with regard to population aging: the magnitude and speed of the demographic trends; the concurrent social and economic changes ongoing throughout much of the region; and the awareness of policymakers to potential threats to the well-being of the elderly. As a result, policymakers are interested in fashioning programs that address emerging needs which are not excessively costly and which do not undermine traditional social arrangements. The paper reviews the key demographic changes and contrasts them with Europe; and then highlights three research perspectives-cohort succession, family accommodations, and older life course transitions-which can provide essential insights for policy and program development in the areas of health services, social welfare programs, and retirement provisions. The paper is a slightly revised version of one presented at the Annual Conference of the British Society for Population Studies, September 6-8, 1999 at University College, Dublin.