EUROPEAN PAPERS ON THE NEW WELFARE

Archive for February, 2008

Domotics in the Counter-Ageing Society

Abstract

The advances in information, communication and micro — technologies are leading to the introduction of new devices that can transform our living environment. One of the most promising fields of applications for domotics is the home of elderly citizens, whose aim is to live independently. The challenge today is to integrate different domotic technologies into a service framework that is really useful and is sustainable in terms of financing: this article sets out to discuss a possible pathway to independent living.
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Scenarios for Health Policy and Funding In Europe

1. Introduction

In the decade 1993-2003 health funding saw real terms growth across the OECD area. Only in Finland did the health share of GDP fall during this decade (Table 1). This period of relatively rapid growth is highly likely to have brought on a phase of cost containment through pressure on funders ability to pay — but this time there was additional pressure from changing perceptions of the longer term pressures on health services. The concerns are no longer just about the supply side and short term cost containment — they have shifted towards a new set of concerns about the future demand for health. Future demography has for long been presented as a nightmare with rising support costs for more elderly people: but in addition there are new and unsettling concerns about lifestyle changes which affect all age groups.
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Longevity and Predictive Medicine

1. Introduction

Our society is characterized by a progressive phenomenon of population ageing, with a high prevalence of chronic and degenerative diseases and an increasing level of disability1,2,3. World-wide the average life of man is approaching 80 years, while the Maximum Life Span, which is species-specific, is approximately 120 years, twice the maximum age of the chimpanzee, the animal most closely correlated with man from a genetic point of view (only 0.6% genomic differences).
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Insurance: A Leading Player in the New Welfare

1. Introduction

As recently as last September, the ex Health Minister, Umberto Veronesi told the Corriere della Sera that boys born in 2007 have a life expectancy of 97 years, while that of girls is as much as 103. A fact, the internationally famous scientist explained, made possible by the enormous progress made by medical science.
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A Longer Life: Yes, But How and at What Cost? Ethical Issues

1. Introduction
The topic here is not ageing, but the evolution towards a long life society.
Admittedly, life expectancy is increasing, but the age at which someone can be considered to be old is rising in parallel. Since 1945, life expectancy in France has lengthened by 17 years for men and by 19 years for women. The figures for Japan are even more striking: 32 years for women and 28 years for men. To be aged 72, as I am, is not the same thing as it was in 1945 or in 1900. In France, 70% of those aged over 70 live without health worries. In 2040 the number of people aged over 75 will be the same as the number aged over 60 in 1940.
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The Necessity for a Restructuring of the Welfare System

At the Turin conference, authoritative academics, members of the professions, from the world of finance and insurance, policy makers, met to discuss the subject of population ageing. In particular they considered the repercussions of longevity and the increase in life expectancy on the economic sustainability of Welfare systems.
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Facing Demographic Transition

1. Introduction

In his speech at the 2007 Annual Club of Rome conference R. Rato, managing director of IMF, listed three main problems facing us today: 1) financial instability, 2) climate change and 3) demographic transition. None of these problems will be solved by continuing business as usual. Actually, they will be augmented since they are the result of our current behaviour. the contemporary world is a mixture of successes (e.g. improvements in health and considerable increase in life expectancy, The Montreal treaty on the ozone layer, increasing democracy, and of course science — our most successful endeavour) and failures (e.g. over-use of non-renewable resources, increased ecological footprint, no progress on non-proliferation, increasing inequalities and political instabilities, climate warming, pollution). Rapid changes and globalisation1 are making the contemporary world very different from what it was barely a century ago. Tomorrow is always too late.
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Editorial

It was in October 2004 that the first conference on “Strategies for the New Welfare Society in the Larger Europe” took place in Trieste, organized by The Risk Institute, The Geneva Association, the Club of Rome and The Central European Initiative, with the patronage of the Autonomous Region Friuli – Venezia Giulia. This event gave birth to the “European Papers on the New Welfare”, with the contribution of Macros Research. The programme was published in issue 1 of these Papers.

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