Interventions in the built and social environment improving elderly’s wellbeing in an activity-travel context

15 December 2019 → 30 September 2021
Regional and community funding: Special Research Fund
Research disciplines
  • Medical and health sciences
    • Geriatrics
Ageing society Activity-travel behaviour Place-specific wellbeing Built environment Social environment Cultural specificity Belgium China
Project description

Most western countries (such as Belgium) have been witnessing
prominent demographic ageing. Ageing often implies declined
functional capacities and hence declined capacity for travel. As travel
is imperative to live independently and maintain social ties, declined
capacity for travel is likely to adversely affect elderly’s wellbeing.
“Ageing in place” – without relocation – is a key strategy for coping
with the challenges of an ageing society. Resources of living
environment are closely associated with an individual’s lifestyle,
activity participation and quality of life. In order to secure travel
options and enhance the wellbeing of older adults, it is important to
understand the relationships between living environment, activitytravel behaviour, and wellbeing.
In this project, the question of how physical and social aspects of the
living environment affect activity-travel behaviour of older adults will
be investigated. Furthermore, the relationships between elderly’s
wellbeing and activity-travel behaviour will be explored. Also, the
comparative analysis between Ghent (Belgium) and Nanjing (China)
will be conducted for highlighting the cultural specificity of placebased wellbeing. Finally, by identifying the key elements of living
environment which maximise elderly’s wellbeing in an activity-travel
context, policy interventions will be discussed for building an agefriendly society.