Cognitive and applied ageing: Introduction to special issue

Yaniv Hanoch, Stacey Wood, Lori E. James

Research output: Contribution to journalSpecial issuepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


According to the Office of National Statistics (2019), it is projected that by 2050 one in four people living in the UK will be age 65 years or over, growing faster than any other age group. Data from Asia Pacific region reveal that by 2035, in several countries that share of older adults in the population will also exceed 20% (South Korea, Hong Kong Singapore, Thailand and China). Similar demographic trends are seen across the globe. The growing rate of older adults in the population has had (and will continue to have) a major social, economic, health, and psychological impact on society. Leading institutions, such as the UN and the World Bank, have already identified the challenges that an ageing population will pose to policymakers, health care professionals, economists, and psychologists, among others. In fact, no other demographic change is as pervasive, serious, and imminent. For example, average life expectancy has risen dramatically from 55 to 75 in the last sixty years, with the oldest old age group (85 and above) increasing at the fastest rate. These demographic shifts require that psychologists need to better understand how ageing impacts a myriad of daily demands such as financial, health and social decision-making. Likewise, the extended life span has led to a higher rate of older adults suffering from complex comorbidities that might impact their cognitive ability. Understanding features related to applied and cognitive ageing, thus, is of major importance and could help shed light and contribute to successful ageing—that is, high physical, psychological, and social functioning in old age without major diseases (see Rowe & Kahn, 1987, 1997). There is little doubt that psychologists studying developmental trajectories and age-related differences in applied and cognitive factors are uniquely placed to contribute answers to these important questions.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)247-251
Number of pages5
JournalBritish Journal of Developmental Psychology
Issue number2
Early online date18 Dec 2020
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2021
Externally publishedYes


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