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Guardian’s special series on “The new retirement”

by on February 2, 2017

This is a new nine part series on retirement.  Three parts have been published so far:

  1. How an ageing population is transforming Britain
  2. A generation who can’t afford to retire
  3. Work until you drop

The series has a mix of personal stories, publically available facts and figures along with commentary form a number of key researchers in the area.  Each article explores a range of issues and provides links through to the academic research projects that are discussed.  It appears as somewhat as a personal mission for Amelia Hill, the journalist as in places she documents her visits to interview her sources.  Its obviously a timely series and is prompting a lot of feedback judging by the ‘below the line comments’.  My frustration is the way in which big topics – such as skills development in later careers and barriers to occupational transition – are only mentioned in passing.  (Regular readers will notice my restraint given the use of the G word.) Some of the more fundamental issues of retirement are also hinted at but not really unpacked.  So for example is thinking of retirement as a ‘decision’ or ‘choice’ helpful anymore? What role do these terms paly in shaping our understanding of working in later life?  Does the classic notion of looking at the push v pull issues of retirement help us understand the broad range of responses to ageing at work today?  However there are of course three more episodes in the series so perhaps it is to early to say that these will not be address.  Certainly this sort of coverage – and particularly the combination of personal experience and academic voices – is a great way of getting people talking about age at work.

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