BIF awarded $272K to study new models for the ‘aging experience’

(Updated, 3:28 p.m.) The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation has awarded a $272,400 grant to the Business Innovation Factory to “explore the ‘connected aging experience’ and identify transformational models for connected aging,” according to the Providence-based organization. More

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BIF awarded $272K to study new models for the ‘aging experience’

PBN FILE PHOTO/STEPHANIE ALVAREZ EWENS
BUILDING ON WHAT IT LEARNED about the elderly in its 2009 Nursing Home of the Future project – Director of Resident Activities at the Tockwotten Home Judy Brown, interacts with residents during a stretching class in this photo from the time – the Business Innovation Factory has received a $272,400 grant to explore the ‘connected aging experience.’
Posted 6/12/13

(Updated, 3:28 p.m.)

PROVIDENCE – The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation has awarded a $272,400 grant to the Business Innovation Factory to “explore the ‘connected aging experience’ and identify transformational models for connected aging,” according to the Providence-based organization dedicated to finding innovative solutions to societal challenges.

BIF has studied aging starting in 2006, through its Nursing Home of the Future project, through which it learned how relationships of the elderly contributed to the quality of their lives.

Through this grant, BIF expects to delve more deeply into the experience of the increasing population of the elderly who are living independently, including how their social experiences affect their health and well-being.

According to BIF Chief Market Maker Eli Stefanski, who wrote about the award on the BIF Weblog, the project will “bring community resources into the design process to ideate new models for connected aging.”

She added that once the study understands how the elderly interact with one another, it will ask “How might we extend their health and independence through social interaction?”

And finally, Stefanski said, BIF will examine how communities interact with the elderly, identifying opportunities to increase those interactions for the benefit of the aging population.

The direction of the project is designed to counteract what BIF says is “Our cultural view of aging is one focused on deteriorating health and the increasing need for care. When we see the problem this way, it frames how we respond and limits the possibilities and choice we have as we age.”

Ninety percent of the grant has been paid, and the foundation will remit the remaining 10 percent upon completion of the project, which is expected to last six months.

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