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Elder Care Economy Innovations Hub

The rapid aging of the world’s population is dramatically transforming social, economic and political institutions. New ideas and innovations are urgently needed to help seniors age successfully within their homes and communities.

The Elder Care Economy Innovations Hub is a response to this approaching “silver tsunami.” Its mission is to improve the lives of the elderly population in North Carolina, and serve as a national model for healthy and economically sound aging in place.

This joint effort between the Frank Hawkins Kenan Institute of Private Enterprise and the Gillings School of Global Public Health operates under four strategic initiatives:

  • Accelerating efforts to build age-friendly communities through the Age-friendly Community Development Center for Research Excellence
  • Cultivating a global big data initiative to mine relevant open sources of data and develop new analytics to better understand global aging challenges and identify solutions
  • Establishing the Age-friendly Social Innovation Laboratory, with undergraduate and graduate courses to serve as incubators for ideas and innovations to promote healthy and active aging
  • Providing education and resources for “encore entrepreneurs” aged 50 years and older

The hub engages in extensive outreach, service and evidence-based advocacy work, and leverages the expertise of UNC-Chapel Hill scholars and practitioners within the Schools of Business, Medicine, Public Health and Social Work, and the Departments of Biomedical Engineering, City and Regional Planning and Public Policy. We also maintain strategic alliances with the MIT Age Lab, Newcastle and Cambridge Universities and many local, state and national affinity groups, including AARP, LeadingAge, and the Councils on Aging.

By 2050, the ratio of children to elderly adults in the world is estimated to be 1:1, down from 3:1 in 2005.