The ageing process must be comprehended as a construction built by multiple logics, practices and cultural values intertwined. Studies from the World Health Organization (WHO) indicate that by 2050 the number of people over 65 years old will double; it provokes numerous challenges, especially for Low and Middle-Income Countries (LMICs) like Brazil. The idea of promoting healthy ageing points out to some fundamental issues such as: how to promote the inclusion of older adults in a friendly city environment, how to develop intergenerational practices in public spaces and public policies focused on ageing in place, and how to guarantee the elimination of barriers to allow older adults to have adequate social and civic participation in the city. Older adults studies comprise three spatial dimensions, which correspond to different levels of interaction and memory: 1. the city, the shared public space; 2. the neighbourhood, the private space; and 3. the home. These three dimensions must be analysed together so that the ageing process occurs in a healthy environment, allowing older adults autonomy, and strengthening social bonds through local networks (such as the neighbourhood) and approaches to evoke memorial narratives, which are fundamental in the affirmation of social identity.
The Centre for Healthy Cities, Ageing and Citizenship involves academics from the Postgraduate Programs in Architecture and Planning, Social Memory and Cultural Heritage, Dentistry, Physical Education, and Epidemiology of the Federal University of Pelotas. It has begun in 2018 and will be run until December 2023. The Centre works with the following countries: UK, France, Argentina and Chile. It is part of a bigger Institutional Project of the Federal University of Pelotas.
We also have the international participation of the Urban Institute of Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh (UK), the Laboratoire de Sociologie Mémoire et Cognition of the Université Nice Anthipolis (France), the Universidad Nacional de La Patagonia (UNPSJB), Argentina, and Universidad del Bío Bío in Chile. The starting point of this Centre was the PlaceAge Project funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), coordinated in the UK by Professor Ryan Woorych at Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh, and in Brazil by Professor Adriana Portella (2018-2023) and Professor Eduardo Rocha (2023-) at Federal University of Pelotas. The Behaviour Studies Laboratory (LabCom) is part of the Centre.
The Centre is part of the CAPES PRINT International Program of the Brazilian Federal Government. The aim is to encourage the construction, implementation and consolidation of strategic internationalization plans; stimulate the formation of international research networks; expand actions to support internationalization in postgraduate programs; promote mobility of professors and students (with an emphasis on PhD students, post-doc fellows and professors abroad and to Brazil); foster the transformation of participating institutions in an international environment; and integrate other CAPES promotion actions to the Brazilian internationalization effort.