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International Scientific Educational Laboratory for the Improvement of Wellbeing Technologies of Older Adults

Invited researcher Fabio Casati
Contract number
14.Z50.31.0029
Time span of the project
2014-2018

As of 02.06.2020

43
Number of staff members
224
scientific publications
2
Objects of intellectual property
General information

Name of the project: Evaluation and improvement of social, economic and emotional well-being of elderly people. Institutes of fulfilment of the resource potential of the older generation. Development of a complex system for assessment of inequality of the elderly people and design of tools for their viability.

Strategy for Scientific and Technological Development Priority Level: ж


Goals and objectives

Research directions:

  • Developing conceptual understanding pf nature and components of evaluating economic, social and emotional well-being
  • Developing a system for complex assessment of social, economic and emotional wellbeing of elderly people
  • Developing practical recommendations and solutions to enhance wellbeing of elderly people by forming model of favorable space
  • Justifying necessity, possibility and practicability of substitution of the sustained stereotype of «lonely old age» for well-being of old age persons as a result of active social and economic engineering

  • Development of a concept of engagement of people of the older generation into the regional community
  • Development of a new complex system for assessment of inequality among the elderly people
  • Development of efficient institutes for implementation of the resource potential of the older generation in the economy of ageing.

Project objective: Establishing methods and directions of implementing state policies improving well-being of elderly people.


The practical value of the study

  • The Laboratory has created a unique complex system to evaluate social, economical and emotional well-being. Its key feature is combination of objective and subjective indicators to evaluate well-being and research of quantitative and qualitative approaches to assessing these indicators.
  • We have created the Russian Elderly Well-being Index – REWI based on results of regular monitoring of quality of life. It allows to assess characteristics of well-being in regions. The data is available at the website: https://biorevitalizatsiya.ru/revi/
  • Our researchers have conducted a series of complex of sociological research of parameters and factors of well-being of elderly people in regions (over 3000 respondents overall). We have developed a sociological toolkit and formed a database of characteristics of subjective well-being. We have analyzed subjective and objective factors of well-being, found necessary and sufficient conditions for well-being of elderly people. The obtained scientific results allow to update the factographic database of evaluations of quality of life of the elder generation.
  • We have developed tools for evaluation prospects of the future. There is a serious gap in evaluation of time perspective of the future (Future Time Perspective – FTP) of the elderly people of Russia. To eliminate this gap we have created a Russian questionnaire and validated it over a Russian sample (N=160, age 20–85+).
  • The Laboratory has developed a methodology for sociological research to isolate factors of loneliness of elderly people. We have developed a sociological question form and a procedure of sociological research. We have conducted a sociological research of loneliness and social isolation among respondents residing in the Tomsk region (N=400) and formed a database of characteristics of loneliness of elderly people. The database can be used as a source of data in the rectified methodology of calculating the Russian Elderly Well-being Index.
  • We have analyzed impact of social activity on well-being of elderly people. The analysis has confirmed the initial hypothesis that non-material factors play the prevailing role in quality of life f elderly people. Any social activity helps an elderly person t to feel needed: this increases self-esteem, improves emotional state and leads to increase of life expectancy.

Implemented results of research:

  • We have developed the GymCentral mobile application that is adapted to abilities and restrictions of elderly people and can teach elderly people how to use modern computer technologies. The application is aimed at forming knowledge about healthy ways of living, ways to increase physical activity, and skills of light physical training. Users can share information about their achievements with friends, motivate each other to increase physical activity.
  • We have created and registered a special program that allows to control database of characteristics of well-being of elderly people. We can collect, process and output information on statistical indicators of well-being based on samples from Russian and foreign database. This functionality can be enriched and filled using results of sociological research conducted by the Laboratory and tools for data processing and analysis.
  • Our researchers have formulated recommendations for developing social infrastructure of the region to increase quality of life of the elderly people based on principles of state social policies outlined in the Strategy in the best interest of the older generation with involvement of focus groups consisting of elderly people, local and regional authorities, employees of social services. It also involved an expert seminars technology developed by the Laboratory. The recommendations are aimed at regional authorities that will review prospects of their practical implementation.
  • Participation of the Tomsk Polytechnic University in the «Tomsk academy of active longevity» project.

Education and career development:

  • 5 foreign professionals from Italy, Paraguay and India have completed internships at the Laboratory.
  • We have implemented a double postgraduate degree program in collaboration with the University of Trento (Italy).
  • 4 doctoral dissertations, 12 candidate dissertations have been defended as well as 1 PhD thesis at the University of Trento (Italy).
  • Undergraduates, postgraduates and young scientists from the Laboratory's stuff have completed training within internship and career enhancement programs at leading international centers: University of Southampton (UK), Autonomous University of Barcelona (Spain), University of Trento (Italy), University of Applied Sciences Ludwigshafen (Germany), Jönköping University (Sweden) and others.
  • Over 80 undergraduates and postgraduates from leading international universities have taken part in the International Summer Academic School UniverCiTerra in 2015.
  • We have developed and implemented three new career enhancement programs that attracted more than 45 participants – young scientists and young professionals (candidates of sciences) from other organizations.
  • The Laboratory has implemented two new education courses «Public economics and social policy» and «Housing, Community and Economic Development» within the «Innovative management» program.
  • We have compiled and published a textbook, a study guide, and an anthology in the Laboratory's research domain.

Organizational and structural changes:

  • A center for additional education of elderly people has been created.
  • We have created the Lifelong Wellbeing initiative under supervision of F. Casati to sudsy best foreign practices in science and education.

Other results:

  • Research conducted by the Laboratory has been supported by grants from the Russian Humanities Scientific Foundation and the Russian Foundation for Basic Research (15 projects) with overall funding amount of 16 million rubles.
  • We have completed an international contract for research for 38 thousand Euro.
  • We have completed 5 agreements with companies.
  • A special issue of the «Information Society» journal on the topic of our research (2015). The «Well-being: economics and society» series of the STT (Scientific and Technical Translations) publishing house. Editorial board of the series: G. A. Barysheva (chief editor), F. Casati, O. P. Nedospasova.

Collaborations:

  • University of Trento (Italy): joint research, international agreement, Web of Science articles, defending a PhD thesis, joint PhD program, joint grant applications (Russian Science Foundation, Horizon-2020)
  • School of Health and Well-being of the Jönköping University (Sweden): joint scientific events, research and internships, Scopus articles, Erasmus+ grant (International Credit Mobility)
  • Centre for Research on Ageing of the University of Southampton (UK): joint research, scientific internships, Scopus monograph, career enhancement diplomas on modules of the «Gerontology» masters program
  • University of Applied Sciences Ludwigshafen (Germany): joint scientific events, internships, «Forschungsstipendien – Kurzstipendien» (DAAD) grant application
  • Saint Petersburg National Research University of Information Technologies, Mechanics and Optics – ITMO (Russia): joint research, scientific events, Scopus articles, sections in the Laboratory's topics at international conferences
  • Russian Geographical Society: joint scientific events together with the Ministry of Happiness of Bhutan, «Lesson of happiness for schoolchildren» project
  • Northern (Arctic) Federal University (Russia): joint research, scientific events, Russian Science Foundation grant application
  • Branch of the Tomsk Research Institute of Spa Studies and Physiotherapy of the Siberian Research and Clinical Centre of the Federal Biomedical Agency of Russia

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Kopec W., Balcerzak B., Nielek R., Kowalik G., Wierzbicki A., Casati F.
Older adults and hackathons: a qualitative study. Empirical Software Engineering. Vol. 23: 1895-1930 (2018).
Nikitina S., Didino D., Baez M., Casati F.
Feasibility of Virtual Tablet-Based Group Exercise Among Older Adults in Siberia: Findings From Two Pilot Trials. JMIR mHealth and uHealth. Vol. 6. Issue 2 (2018).
Baez M., Khaghani-Far I., Ibarra F., Ferron M., Didino D., Casati F.
Effects of online group exercises for older adults on physical, psychological and social wellbeing: a randomized pilot trial. PEERJ 5: е3150 (2017).
Didino D.; Taran E.A.; Gorodetski K.; Melikyan Z.A.; Nikitina S.; Gumennikov I., Korovina O.; Casati F.
Exploring predictors of life satisfaction and happiness among Siberian older adults living in Tomsk Region. European Journal of Ageing. 15(2): 1–13 (2017).
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