The Sloan Research Network on Aging & Work Newsletter
February 23, 2017
Our annual report to the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation documented significant progress in the building of the Network. Over the course of this year, membership has grown from 89 members from 15 countries and a dozen disciplines to over 180 members from 21 countries and over two dozen disciplines. In addition to strengthening the membership and the Steering Committee, and making progress on the proposed goals, the growing visibility of the Network has led to many opportunities to leverage the depth and breadth of this coalition of scholars for multiple activities and events.  

The Sloan Research Network Fall Institute

The Sloan Research Network Fall Institute  was held at the T. H. Chan School of Public Health at Harvard University (HU) October 27-28, 2016.  In collaboration with Professor Lisa Berkman, director of the HU Center for Population and Developmental Studies, a request for proposals (RFP) was sent to Network members in May, 2016.  The RFP: Is There an App for That? Overcoming the Constraints of Later Life Work-generated 15 proposals from Network members who represented 9 countries and 7 disciplines, and both senior and early career scholars.  

In the wrap-up, conversation focused on ways to: "harness the productive potential of older adults in the workplace;" "engage employers in efforts to overcome constraints (e.g., better understand the demand side of employment)"; think about the vast diversity of older workers, organizations, and jobs; explore the tension between making "graceful exits possible" and exploiting the capacities of older workers; identify mechanisms for the right incentives for employers; expose age bias; and more.  "Virtual" follow-up sessions with sub-groups are continuing throughout the year.  We hope to present papers in 2018   Fall Institute Program .

Changing Attitudes/Expanding Possibilities for Later Life Employment

While making connections and recruiting new Network members, we were invited into a conversation with Greg O'Neil, Director of the National Academy on an Aging Society, and James Appleby, Executive Director and CEO of GSA.  Upon learning more about the Network and our concerns about the lack of attention to aging and work issues within GSA programming, we were invited to host a special day-long session for the annual meeting of GSA 11/17/16 in New Orleans. Topics included Age Stereotypes at Work; Aging, Continued Work and Technology; Work and Caregiving; and Predictors, Barriers and Facilitators of Longer Working Lives.  With one exception, all the sessions were well-attended, with audiences ranging from 40-70 participants.  The combination of this day of sessions and the additional papers that were accepted and scheduled for other times during the meeting clearly had a multiplicative effect on the number of sessions focused on aging and work at GSA this year.  It is noteworthy that there were at least 55 papers and 11 posters focused on aging and work at GSA, an improvement over the previous years  Program schedule  

Coming July 22-23, 2017-A Pre-Conference Workshop, Translating Research on Aging & Work into Practice: Effective Strategies for Communicating with Employers at the 21st IAGG World Congress of Gerontology and Geriatrics in San Francisco

In collaboration with Nancy Morrow-Howell, PhD, and Patricia M. D'Antonio, RPh, MS, MBA, CGP, and with support from the National Institute on Aging and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, we will host a pre-conference full-day workshop at IAGG 2017 on the state of knowledge about workplace-based policies and practices that make it possible for older adults to extend their labor force attachment. We will be joined in this effort by the Sloan Research Network steering committee member Philip Taylor, PhD, director of the Australian Retirement Institute in Federation, AU, and convener of the Older Worker Interest Group, who is working toward a better understanding of how to communicate research knowledge to business leaders. Link to program.
Registration is open at and is a separate registration from the IAGG 2017 World Congress.  I hope to see many of you there!

As always, I like to remind you that this is your Network!  Please let me know if there are additional ways that we can support you in your work

In appreciation for the work you do,

Jacquelyn James
Director, Sloan Research Network on Aging & Work
Boston College

*Network Steering Committee: Ruth Kanfer, Christina Matz-Costa, Phyllis Moen, Alicia Munnell, Marcie Pitt-Catsouphes, Sara Rix, Ursula Staudinger, Harvey Sterns, Philip Taylor, Julie Zissimopoulos