The Institute uses the opportunity of China’s unique situation to study the cultural, economic, social, and technological implications of population ageing from an interdisciplinary perspective. This emphasis on the implications of and responses to population ageing is unique as most research on ageing and gerontology tends to focus on ageing per se rather than its consequences for society and the economy.
The Institute’s goals are:
- Study the cultural, economic, social, and technological implications of (population) ageing through rigorous, academic research generating insights which advance both theoretical and practical knowledge
- Advise decision-makers in private and public sectors to develop innovative responses and solutions for the challenges of demographic change in China and other countries
- Enhance the quality-of-life of older people and contribute to a sustainable ageing society in China as well as other countries.
As well as the there are approximately 20 academic staff members from various XJTLU departments who are affiliated with the Institute.
Additionally, there is a strong network of domestic and international partners including, amongst others, strategic partnerships with the Center for Ageing and Health Research at Xi'an Jiaotong University, the Center for Mature Consumer Studies at Georgia State University, USA, the Sloan Center on Ageing and Work at Boston College, USA, and the University of Liverpool, UK.
Location in Jiangsu and Suzhou
Jiangsu and Suzhou, with their combination of suitable geographic location, advanced technology companies, and demographics, are ideally situated to play a key role in shaping China’s transition to an advanced ageing society.
According to the Civil Affairs Bureau of Suzhou Municipality, one in four residents who have local hukou is aged above 60, with a total population of over 1.5 million by the end of 2013. Since 2012, there has been a net increase of about 70,000 every year and it is projected that the total aging population will reach 1.8 million by 2020.
Along with the rapid growing aging population, the life expectancy also has increased. In Suzhou, the 12th Five Year Plan of Aging Undertaking Development has prioritized five areas: endowment and benefits, elderly service, social management of aging society, overall quality of life of older people and development of the aging industry. RIAS’ mission and goals are perfectly in line with these priorities.