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Ageing in place processes in the neighbourhood environment: a proposed conceptual framework from a capability approach


The concept of “ageing in place” has become increasingly significant in the environmental gerontology literature. Despite its predominance, there have been limited efforts to offer a more comprehensive and nuanced conceptualization of this topic. Definitions found in the literature are often too simplistic and only partially capture the various aspects of older adults’ experience while ageing in place. This paper presents a conceptual framework on ageing in place in the context of neighbourhood environment which aims to address this gap by proposing a multi-faceted understanding of ageing in place processes through the lenses of a capability approach, a more comprehensive definition of the concept, and related overarching principles. Building on predominant theories in environmental gerontology, this conceptual framework offers new insights into the interactions between “place” and the “ageing individual”. It is meant to offer opportunities for discussion, to suggest new paths of inquiry, and to explore implications for policy and practice.

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This research was supported in part by the Joseph-Armand Bombardier Doctoral Scholarship of the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (Ref: 767–2012-1672).

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Correspondence to Catherine Bigonnesse.

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Bigonnesse, C., Chaudhury, H. Ageing in place processes in the neighbourhood environment: a proposed conceptual framework from a capability approach. Eur J Ageing 19, 63–74 (2022).

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  • Ageing in place
  • Theory
  • Conceptual framework
  • Environmental gerontology
  • Neighbourhood
  • Capability approach