The Silver Economy

This report was commissioned by the European Commission to support the development of Silver Economy in Europe.

The main objective was to provide the European Commission with key strategic information and a reference framework for the development of a Silver Economy Strategy for Europe. Its findings include that across the EU, there were some 199 million individuals aged 50 and over in 2015 (39% of the total population) and there is significant potential how this group of people will contribute to economic activity, and how this contribution is expected to evolve over the next decade.

In relation to age-friendly housing and the built environment, it recommends that building new modular homes equipped with smart home technologies. Smart home solutions can help increase both the security and comfort for older people. Smart home solutions can also consist of basic house upgrades/retrofitting focusing on improving the functional autonomy and life quality at home, thereby enabling people to stay in their own home for longer. It also points to home adaptations as a key factor to improving the quality of life, enabling older people to remain in their own home for longer.

Lastly, it sets out what is needed is a dedicated and concerted set of actions at European, national and regional levels to take a fresh look at innovating smarter new build and retro-fit home environments, with a view to empowering an ageing population to live more meaningful, independent, connected lives with dignity and autonomy. Results need to inform a European Reference Framework for Age-friendly Housing to boost knowledge and investments in the construction and ICT sectors.