Ageing International

, Volume 30, Issue 1, pp 5–26

Older but not wiser? The relationship between age and wisdom

Public Forum Papers Invited Paper

DOI: 10.1007/BF02681005

Cite this article as:
Sternberg, R.J. Ageing International (2005) 30: 5. doi:10.1007/BF02681005


This article reviews the literature on the relationship between wisdom and aging. It opens with a discussion of different approaches to defining what wisdom is. Philosophical, implicit-theoretical, and explicit-theoretical approaches are considered. The article continues with a consideration of the main perspectives on the relationship between wisdom and aging. Then the article discusses implicit-theories data relevant to the development of wisdom. Next, it considers explicit-theories data relevant to this development. Finally, it draws conclusions. Individual differences in and situational variables relevant to the development of wisdom may overwhelm any trends represented by gross group averages.

Copyright information

© Springer 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.PACE CenterYale UniversityNew Haven
  2. 2.the Department of PsychologyYale UniversityUSA
  3. 3.the School of ManagementYale UniversityUSA

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