Intergenerational Research—A Multi-Perspective Collection of Evidence for Theory and Best Practice

A special issue of Social Sciences (ISSN 2076-0760).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 March 2024) | Viewed by 26302

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
School of PSY - Health Services Management, Griffith University, Brisbane, QLD 4111, Australia
Interests: health law; health finance; organisational reputation; leadership and intergenerational practice
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Guest Editor
School of Health Sciences and Social Work, Griffith University, Meadowbrook, QLD 4131, Australia
Interests: social and emotional development of children (birth to twelve years); outside school hours care; extended education; critical reflection; workforce capacity; intergenerational programs
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Guest Editor
School of PSY - Health Services Management, Griffith University, Brisbane, QLD 4111, Australia
Interests: implementation science; intergenerational work; public health; health services
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Guest Editor
Neuroscience Research Australia, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW 2052, Australia
Interests: psychology and cognitive sciences not elsewhere classified, epidemiology, public health and health services not elsewhere classified
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Guest Editor
Griffith Business School, Griffith University, Gold Coast, QLD 4215, Australia
Interests: process innovation and change management; implementation and quality improvement science; health service management; organisational behaviour in healthcare; professional identity; intergenerational learning
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Intergenerational programs are becoming more important because of their ability to increase confidence, improve communication skills, and build relationships in both older and younger groups. The approaches to intergenerational programs and practices are varied, and the amount of empirical evidence from these programs is increasing. A number of theoretical frameworks are emerging in support of the efficacy of intergenerational practice. Intergenerational practice has gained momentum, with many programs highlighting the mutual benefit of bringing older and younger persons together.

The purpose of this Special Issue is to invite papers that build on the growing evidence base for intergenerational programs in different contexts and from varied perspectives. We welcome contributions from all areas of social science, including social work, social policy, sociology, anthropology, pedagogy, andragogy, psychology, law, health, and management, together with interdisciplinary articles. Papers might have theoretically and methodologically diverse approaches and can explore intergenerational programs in terms of relationships in children’s and older persons’ services; empirical, policy and/or practice perspectives; workforce capacity; architectural and recreational design; curriculum design; pilot projects; and case studies, including large- and small-scale design examples.

Dr. Jennifer Kosiol
Dr. Jennifer Cartmel
Dr. Gaery Barbery
Dr. Ruth Peters
Prof. Dr. Anneke Fitzgerald
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • intergenerational programs
  • social work
  • social policy
  • pedagogy
  • children’s and older persons’ services

Published Papers (7 papers)

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Research

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13 pages, 246 KiB  
Article
“Making Sure the Path Is Safe”: A Case Study of the Influence of Aboriginal Elders on Non-Aboriginal Organisational Leadership
by Tiana Culbong, Uncle Albert McNamara, Aunty Irene McNamara, Uncle Peter Wilkes, Aunty Sandra Wilkes, Adrian Munro, Anne-Marie Eades, Margaret O’Connell, John Fielder and Michael Wright
Soc. Sci. 2024, 13(4), 220; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci13040220 - 18 Apr 2024
Viewed by 679
Abstract
The question of how Aboriginal Elders influence the leadership of non-Aboriginal led service organisations when working biddiya to biddiya (boss to boss) emerged while conducting a qualitative analysis as part of the evaluation of the Looking Forward Moving Forward project. This project brought [...] Read more.
The question of how Aboriginal Elders influence the leadership of non-Aboriginal led service organisations when working biddiya to biddiya (boss to boss) emerged while conducting a qualitative analysis as part of the evaluation of the Looking Forward Moving Forward project. This project brought together non-Aboriginal service leaders, Aboriginal Elders and Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal researchers to implement and evaluate a framework for engagement to promote organisational change and transform the way in which services respond to Aboriginal people in need of mental health and drug and alcohol support in Perth, Western Australia. This paper uses a case study to demonstrate how Elders on Nyoongar Country have influenced one non-Aboriginal service leader. At the heart of this case study is a close examination of a recorded, semi-structured, in-depth focus group exchange between a non-Aboriginal leader, Elders and co-researchers. This exchange foregrounds the Elders’ and co-researchers’ voices, capturing the dialogic nuances and interplay of the interaction to provide a more detailed picture of how building long-term relationships with Elders influences leaders. A key theme to emerge from the data was the developmental change in leadership approaches resulting from the biddiya to biddiya working relationship between Elders and this non-Aboriginal leader. The data show that, along with their deepening relationship, the leader demonstrated an openness and humility to be teachable. This leader demonstrated how he applied his new learning, integrating new ways of working into his leadership practice to change the way his organisation responded to Aboriginal people seeking support and to enhance the organisation’s cultural safety. Full article
17 pages, 299 KiB  
Article
The Impact of a Virtual Environment for Intergenerational Learning
by Greg Cronan, Janna Anneke Fitzgerald, Katrina Radford and Gabriela Di Perna
Soc. Sci. 2023, 12(3), 147; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci12030147 - 2 Mar 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2553
Abstract
Few intergenerational programs have focused on virtual learning. This paper explores the impact that a virtual intergenerational learning program had on primary school students and older adults at a residential aged care home. This study reports on the findings from a single case [...] Read more.
Few intergenerational programs have focused on virtual learning. This paper explores the impact that a virtual intergenerational learning program had on primary school students and older adults at a residential aged care home. This study reports on the findings from a single case study design involving interactions across two sites, consisting of primary school students (n = 41), teachers (n = 2), a principal (n = 1), plus elders (n = 9) and staff (n = 4) from an aged care home. Questionnaires were completed by all participants, except for the school principal. Observations of the program interactions were captured via video ethnography. Data were also evaluated from semi-structured interviews of students (n = 16), parents (n = 2), teachers (n = 2), a principal (n = 1), elders (n = 9) and staff (n = 5) from the aged care home. The findings reveal that intergenerational programs must pay close consideration to the planned activities, participant characteristics, learning environment, equipment, and facilitator interactions and skills, particularly in a virtual space. In addition, this study finds continued evidence for the success of virtual intergenerational practice programs to reduce social isolation and exclusion, especially when we practice social distancing. Full article
12 pages, 600 KiB  
Article
Watching Relationships Build over Time: A Video Analysis of a Hybrid Intergenerational Practice Program
by Jennifer Kosiol and Gabriela Di Perna
Soc. Sci. 2023, 12(2), 96; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci12020096 - 13 Feb 2023
Viewed by 2297
Abstract
Intergenerational programs are devoted to bringing older adults and children together because of their mutual benefits for both parties, such as reduction of ageism, relationship building, and shared learning. This intergenerational practice program included high school children and residents at an over-55 retirement [...] Read more.
Intergenerational programs are devoted to bringing older adults and children together because of their mutual benefits for both parties, such as reduction of ageism, relationship building, and shared learning. This intergenerational practice program included high school children and residents at an over-55 retirement village. The aim of this study was to develop an intergenerational shared learning program during COVID-19 using a hybrid model of face-to-face and videoconferencing technology. As a result of video analysis, researchers observed participant interactions and engagement during face-to-face and video conferencing sessions. The findings highlight the importance of a program structure that adapts to the changing environment and recognises that different settings (video and face-to-face) require different relationship-building activities. In addition, co-collaboration in the development of the program structure was essential to facilitate shared learnings. Full article
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18 pages, 749 KiB  
Article
Development and Implementation of an Intergenerational Bonding Program in a Co-Located Model: A Case Study in Singapore
by I-Ling Yeh, Sebastian Ye Xun Wong, Lydia Safrina Binte Safaruan, Yuan Qi Kang, May S. T. Wong and Ingrid M. Wilson
Soc. Sci. 2022, 11(12), 557; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci11120557 - 29 Nov 2022
Viewed by 4951
Abstract
There is a well-established body of evidence that intergenerational bonding programs (IGPs) can improve the overall well-being of older adults and strengthen relationships and understanding between generations. There is limited literature on the experience of IGPs in an Asian context, despite many of [...] Read more.
There is a well-established body of evidence that intergenerational bonding programs (IGPs) can improve the overall well-being of older adults and strengthen relationships and understanding between generations. There is limited literature on the experience of IGPs in an Asian context, despite many of these countries facing faster rates of population ageing than other Western countries. In Singapore, intergenerational bonding is a priority in national efforts to encourage successful ageing. This paper presents a case study of the development and implementation of a co-located (shared site) model IGP in Singapore. Drawing on interviews with key stakeholders, the aim of this case study is to present the realities of the evolution of an IGP from conceptualisation through to implementation, and used the nursing home’s COVID-19 experience to illustrate issues of sustainability affecting IGPs with vulnerable populations. The findings will inform the development and implementation of similar future programs. Full article
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14 pages, 305 KiB  
Article
Expectations of Cross-Sector Collaboration in Cultural and Arts Education
by Marie-Therese Arnold, Thi Huyen Trang Le and Nina Kolleck
Soc. Sci. 2022, 11(8), 343; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci11080343 - 3 Aug 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2113
Abstract
The promotion of dialogues between youth and older adults in the field of cultural education remains one of the most important educational policy tasks in Germany. After all, intergenerational, cultural projects can make an important contribution to reducing ageism, promoting personal development, and [...] Read more.
The promotion of dialogues between youth and older adults in the field of cultural education remains one of the most important educational policy tasks in Germany. After all, intergenerational, cultural projects can make an important contribution to reducing ageism, promoting personal development, and dealing with social challenges. Close collaboration between actors from different sectors (school, cultural associations, administration, etc.) is needed to secure such programmes. However, this presupposes that the expectations that the involved actors have regarding the collaboration are transparently examined, discussed and adjusted within the collaborative network in advance. Therefore, the aim is to identify initial indications of different expectations of collaboration between actors from various sectors. In order to answer the research question, 24 semi-structured interviews were conducted in combination with ego-centred network maps in six German municipalities with actors from different fields (schools, administration, cultural associations, etc.). The data were then interpreted using qualitative content analysis. Our results show that actors participate with expectations ranging from different degrees of closeness and distance to the other involved actors. These results allow the first systematisation of individual expectations of actors at the beginning of a collaboration. Full article
30 pages, 3629 KiB  
Article
Intergenerational Practice in the Community—What Does the Community Think?
by Gail Kenning, Nicole Ee, Ying Xu, Billy L. Luu, Stephanie A. Ward, Micah B. Goldwater, Ebony Lewis, Katrina Radford, Kaarin J. Anstey, Nicola T. Lautenschlager, Janna Anneke Fitzgerald, Kenneth Rockwood and Ruth Peters
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(10), 374; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10100374 - 7 Oct 2021
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 6186
Abstract
The many changes that occur in the lives of older people put them at an increased risk of being socially isolated and lonely. Intergenerational programs for older adults and young children can potentially address this shortfall, because of the perceived benefit from generations [...] Read more.
The many changes that occur in the lives of older people put them at an increased risk of being socially isolated and lonely. Intergenerational programs for older adults and young children can potentially address this shortfall, because of the perceived benefit from generations interacting. This study explores whether there is an appetite in the community for intergenerational programs for community dwelling older adults. An online survey was distributed via social media, research team networks, and snowballing recruitment with access provided via QR code or hyperlink. Semi-structured interviews were undertaken with potential participants of a pilot intergenerational program planned for the Eastern Suburbs of Sydney, Australia in 2020. The interviews were thematically analyzed. Over 250 people completed the survey, and 21 interviews took place with older adults (10) and parents of young children (11). The data showed that participants were all in favor of intergenerational programs, but there were different perceptions about who benefits most and how. The study highlighted considerations to be addressed in the development of effective and sustainable intergenerational programs. For example, accessing people in the community who are most socially isolated and lonely was identified as a primary challenge. More evidence-based research is needed to support involvement of different cohorts, such as those who are frail, or living with physical or cognitive limitations. Full article
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Review

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14 pages, 2375 KiB  
Review
A Systematic Literature Review of Loneliness in Community Dwelling Older Adults
by Gabriela Di Perna, Katrina Radford, Gaery Barbery and Janna Anneke Fitzgerald
Soc. Sci. 2023, 12(1), 21; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci12010021 - 28 Dec 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 5389
Abstract
Research on loneliness is extensive. This paper presents a systematic review of intervention studies, outlining the antecedents to, and consequences of loneliness in community-dwelling older people. Using PRISMA methodology, a systematic literature review was conducted between January and August 2021 resulting in 49 [...] Read more.
Research on loneliness is extensive. This paper presents a systematic review of intervention studies, outlining the antecedents to, and consequences of loneliness in community-dwelling older people. Using PRISMA methodology, a systematic literature review was conducted between January and August 2021 resulting in 49 useable articles. Papers were included if they: (a) investigated older people (+50); (b) were living in community dwellings; (c) had been published in English; (d) had titles or abstracts available and, (e) were published between 2016 and 2021. This study found the antecedents and consequences of social, emotional and existential loneliness differ, however, the vast majority of research has not examined the unique types of loneliness and instead kept loneliness as a generic term, despite the acceptance that various types of loneliness exist. In addition, the findings of intervention studies identified through this review have yielded mixed results. Those interventions focused on improving personal and psycho-social resources for older people fared better outcomes than those focused on technological and social connections alone. This paper reports important implications for the future of research conducted on loneliness and interventions accordingly. Full article
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