Strategies to enhance productive and healthy environments
The 'Working Late' network, established by Professor Cheryl Haslam of the Department of Human Sciences at Loughborough University is developing a major research programme which will lead to significant improvements in understanding the requirements of older workers. The network comprises a multidisciplinary research team from Loughborough University, the Oxford Institute of Ageing and the Institute of Occupational Medicine, Edinburgh. The network also involves partners from The Royal Society of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (RSA); Age Concern; JMU Access Partnership; Transport Research Laboratory and The Age Employment Network.
This network received NDA funding and became the Working Late project
Cheryl Haslam, Loughborough University
The increasing age of the UK workforce presents new and exciting challenges for organisations and for occupational health services. It is now essential to facilitate an extended working life by maintaining a healthy working environment for older workers.
The research will gather empirical evidence on how employers can provide flexible and dynamic working conditions for older workers and for those experiencing mid-life transitions. The role of occupational health services will be investigated to determine how these vital services may be more proactive in tailoring occupational health solutions to the workforce. The research programme will develop and evaluate interventions to improve the health and well-being of older workers. The Loughborough Network will also focus on the journey to work, the design of the built environment and equipment for older workers. This research will lead to workplace design of environments and technologies that accommodate the needs of workers as they age, which will encourage inclusive working environments and remove physical and psychological barriers to work.
The implementation of this innovative research agenda will facilitate a transformation of working practices, support services and the working environment, allowing freedom of access to work and an improvement in the quality of working life of older people.