Prerequisites and driving forces behind an extended working life among older workers

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T1 - Prerequisites and driving forces behind an extended working life among older workers

AU - Hovbrandt, Pia

AU - Håkansson, Carita

AU - Albin, Maria

AU - Carlsson, Gunilla

AU - Nilsson, Kerstin

PY - 2019

Y1 - 2019

N2 - Background: Reforms are changing pension systems in many European countries, in order to both restrict early retirement and force people to extend their working life. From occupational therapy and occupational science perspectives, studies focusing on aspects of working life that motivate the older worker is urgent. Aim: The aim was to describe incentives behind an extended working life among people over age 65. Method: Focus group methodology was used, with participants ages 66–71, from varying work fields: construction and technical companies and the municipal elderly care sector. Findings: Work was considered important and valuable to the degree of how challenging work was, the possibilities for inclusion in a team of colleagues and the chances for better personal finances. Amongst all, the participants expressed a feeling of a strengthened identity by being challenged and having the opportunity to manage working tasks. Conclusion: The finding showed the actual reasons behind an extended working life among older workers. However, a risk of rising social inequity may appear with increased working life if older people are forced to extend their working life due to a difficult financial situation as a pensioner. A variety of retirement options and initiatives in order to support older workers are justified.

AB - Background: Reforms are changing pension systems in many European countries, in order to both restrict early retirement and force people to extend their working life. From occupational therapy and occupational science perspectives, studies focusing on aspects of working life that motivate the older worker is urgent. Aim: The aim was to describe incentives behind an extended working life among people over age 65. Method: Focus group methodology was used, with participants ages 66–71, from varying work fields: construction and technical companies and the municipal elderly care sector. Findings: Work was considered important and valuable to the degree of how challenging work was, the possibilities for inclusion in a team of colleagues and the chances for better personal finances. Amongst all, the participants expressed a feeling of a strengthened identity by being challenged and having the opportunity to manage working tasks. Conclusion: The finding showed the actual reasons behind an extended working life among older workers. However, a risk of rising social inequity may appear with increased working life if older people are forced to extend their working life due to a difficult financial situation as a pensioner. A variety of retirement options and initiatives in order to support older workers are justified.

KW - Active ageing

KW - ageism

KW - occupational science

KW - occupational therapy

KW - retirement age

KW - working life

U2 - 10.1080/11038128.2017.1409800

DO - 10.1080/11038128.2017.1409800

M3 - Article

VL - 26

SP - 171

EP - 183

JO - Scandinavian Journal of Occupational Therapy

T2 - Scandinavian Journal of Occupational Therapy

JF - Scandinavian Journal of Occupational Therapy

SN - 1651-2014

IS - 3

ER -