Why are we doing this?
Life expectancies are increasing by five hours a day. This is a startling achievement and one that is set to transform everything from employment to welfare to the norms of family life.
Our assumptions about what it means to be seventy or eighty are being challenged and we need to create ways of living that enable us all to live well for longer.
Longer lives mean many more opportunities to live, to learn and to enjoy. But we also know that the extra years of life will not always be healthy. Disability free life expectancy isn't going up any faster than life expectancy, which means that there will be a large, and growing, number of people living with long-term conditions and disabilities.
So we need to find new ways to age well - innovations in mobilising community support for older people; innovations that focus more on how technologies are used than on the technologies themselves; innovations in how jobs are organised; and innovations to enable people to live well with long term conditions. We are innovating across science and technology but also need to innovate across our social institutions - in how we live and work.
What are we doing?
As the UK's innovation foundation, Nesta is already involved in supporting some of the most interesting projects that are seeking answers. We are developing ideas to reduce social isolation and increase mobility through The Ageing Well Challenge Prize, backing over 50 innovations to encourage people to give more of their time, resources and money for social good through the Innovation in Giving Fund, and investing in innovations which improve outcomes for older people through the pioneering £17m Nesta Impact Investment Fund.
And we're committed to expanding our work in this field. We will be looking for opportunities to back ageing innovations that enable people to help people through the recently announced Centre for Social Action's Innovation Fund. And we plan to launch a practical programme of work in ageing in Autumn 2013.
You can find out more about the work underpinning our Ageing and Innovation programme in the links below:
Meet the innovators
Check out our living map of ageing innovations – or submit your own!
Our Ageing Well Challenge sought ideas to improve older people's lives