The Community Imaging Group at the University of Oulu, along with the City of Oulu, have joined the new Horizon 2020 project Grey and green in Europe: elderly living in urban areas (GRAGE). During the next 48 months a consortium of 10 partners from all over Europe will carry out an interdisciplinary study on the challenges of ageing and sustainable development in urban areas.
The kick-off meeting was held in Brussels on 25/26 February 2015 where the consortium had the opportunity to discuss in details this ambitious project and plan its future development. In addition, the project objectives and goals were also discussed in presence of delegates from the EU Commission.
The main focus of the research ranges from the analysis of the policies adopted by Member States on the theme of active ageing, as well as social, juridical, economic and technological analysis connected to active ageing within the urban environment. Amongst these issues: green urbanization, food sustainability, elderly urban behavior analysis. All aspects are tightly correlated to the forthcoming EXPO in Milan.
About project GRAGE
The EU is facing numerous challenges in achieving a more balanced regional development and sustainable economic recovery. Many of those challenges have to do with the ageing population trend, urbanization and environment under distress.
GRAGE intends to contribute to tackle this challenges by developing winning ideas to promote an active, harmonious and inclusive citizenship for elderly people living in urban contexts. The consortium gathers ground-breaking expertise from different scientific background (legal, economic, humanities, engineering), from academic and non-academic institutions, from several countries (from EU and the Ukraine). By applying a mix of methodologies, the research and innovation programme of the project will evolve around the idea of citizenship as a collector of interest, healthy environment and suitable urban solutions for an aging society.
GRAGE intends to boost dialogue throughout Europe, both strengthening the academic and non-academic collaboration and a practical understanding of elderly living across Europe. Such a cooperation can have a series of returns for Europe, ranging from a more effective solution to strategic challenges (sustainable cities and demographic change) to new business opportunities for European businesses, offering solutions and products for smart/inclusive/ageing societies at global level.
During the next four years, researchers belonging to academic institutions (University of Oulu, Utrecht University, Ulster University, University of Macerata, Taras University of Kyiv) and non-academic institutions (Militos Consulting S.A., Waag Society, EQI, Ifuplan, City of Oulu) will have the opportunity of developing research activities and dissemination initiatives related to the themes of the project.
GRAGE is funded by the EU Commission within the prestigious framework programme for the research “Horizon 2020”. In particular, it is included amongst the Marie Skłodowska Curie – RISE (Research Innovation Staff Exchange) actions, in which the collaboration between Universities and Enterprises is being facilitated through the mutual exchange of staff.