Advancing Long and Productive Lives- 10/06/16 #MacroSW Chat

by Patricia Shelly


(Here is the archive of all the tweets from this chat)


Official GCSW_Logo




cover of the report on "Increasing Productive Engagement in Later Life"

What does healthy aging and productivity look like in the 21st century? Baby boomers are retiring later, millennials are starting families and technology continuously offers new ways to delegate tasks.

One Grand Challenges for Social Work paper explained the trends as follows:

“Increased automation and longevity demand new thinking by employers and employees regarding productivity. Young people are increasingly disconnected from education or work and the labor force faces significant retirements in the next decades. Throughout the lifespan, fuller engagement in education and paid and unpaid productive activities can generate a wealth of benefits, including better health and well-being, greater financial security, and a more vital society.”

Man with white hair in clear goggles and blue cape raises fist, as does his young male sidekick in goggles and red cape.
Superhero and sidekick. Image: Beth Johnson Foundation

The challenge of reshaping social expectations, institutions, policies, and programs so we can benefit from the older population and its growing social capital is more important than ever.

Join us on Thursday, October 6, 2016, at 9pm ET, 8pm CT and 6pm PT:

We’ll chat about how ways to increase ongoing engagement with and productivity by our older Americans.

Pat Shelly, University at Buffalo School of Social Work @UBSSW
Mikhail Bell, representing the American Academy of Social Work and Social Welfare @AASWSW

Questions for Discussion:

  1. Why is increasing productive engagement in later life a Grand Challenge for Social Work?
  2. What is productive aging?
  3. How does productive engagement benefit society?
  4. How can social work lead the way with this challenge?
  5. What are some examples of productive engagement for later life? Any from your community?
  6. Do you have new ideas or visions for a productive later life?



Teresa Minja speaks out at the U.N. on the need for a convention on the rights of older people. Image: Help Age International
Teresa Minja speaks out at the U.N. on the need for a convention on the rights of older people. Image: Help Age International
white woman with white hair and big black sunglassed in night club in front of turntable.
Mamy Rock, a British DJ in her 70’s, made appearances across Europe. Image: SPOA films



About #MacroSW:

#MacroSW is a collaboration of social workers, organizations, social work schools, and individuals working to promote macro social work practice. Macro social work practice focuses on changing larger systems, such as communities and organizations. It encompasses a broad spectrum of actions and ideas, ranging from community organizing and education to legislative advocacy and policy analysis. The chats are held weekly on Twitter every Thursday at 9 p.m. EST (6 p.m. PST). Click here for a list of chat partners. For information about how to participate in the #MacroSW chat, view our FAQs. For chat schedule and chat archives check out:

1 Comment

  1. Reblogged this on The Empowerment Project and commented:

    We’ll be discussing productive aging in our society as part of the grand challenges of social work. What are your visions for a productive and engaging later life for yourself and your loved ones? What special opportunities and challenges exist for women?

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.