Harvard University

To develop a better and more cohesive understanding of current and future trends in aging and labor force participation in the United States and to impart that information to the general public

  • Amount $561,331
  • City Cambridge, MA
  • Investigator Lisa Berkman
  • Year 2018
  • Program Research
  • Sub-program Working Longer

Changes in health, family, and work may make working longer difficult if not risky for substantial sections of the future U.S. population. This grant supports a community of scholars to produce 12 papers involving original research that will introduce a new framework for understanding current and future trends in working longer. The resulting volume—published either as a book or in a high-impact special journal issue—will examine multiple contexts that shape Americans’ likelihood of working longer, with emphasis on two cross-cutting themes of change across cohorts and heterogeneity across population subgroups, which have not been sufficiently studied to date. Under the leadership of Lisa Berkman of Harvard, this project will bring together a multidisciplinary group of distinguished scholars and invite them to collaborate with promising junior scholars, inviting the next generation of researchers to critically examine conventional thinking in this area. Grant funds will support three meetings so that authors can integrate objectives, gain important feedback from each other, and present their results in a policy-relevant setting. The project’s goals are threefold: to publish original research that brings critical, new perspectives to the scholarship on working longer; to build a new, intergenerational community of scholars who will set the agenda for future research; and to disseminate high-impact findings that have the potential to influence policymakers and public discourse.

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