Ursula Staudinger at the Berlin Demography Forum Workshop: “Integration of older individuals in the labor market: Global perspectives”

The Berlin Demography Forum is a cross-party global dialog platform, which takes place annually with a changing set of questions on demographic challenges. The aim is to bring together leaders from politics, business, science and civil society and to discuss possible routes towards sustainable development and develop steps of action that tackle demographic change.

“Education and Integration” was the theme of the 6th Berlin Demography Forum that took place in mid-February in Berlin. Experts from 20+ countries examined the impact of demographic change on families, work life, health, and migration and the importance of education as a key factor for societal participation. A central question was what kind of school and work qualification young people, older employees as well as refugees need for the digitalized working world of today and tomorrow.

“If we consider both fertility and aging, the key is to redefine work in the 21st Century,” said Ursula Staudinger, director of the Columbia Aging Center. “We are able to work more years, because we stay healthy longer. But we cannot and don’t want to do this if the labor market and the traditional working career remain the same as in the past.” For societies of longer lives it was critical that the sphere of work encompassed lifelong learning more. Only then, would they be able to maintain their productivity in the future.