Social Entrepreneurship and Creative Aging

Date: 12 April 2013
Time: 4:30 - 6:30 pm
Venue: Room 436, 4F, Run Run Shaw Tower, Centennial Campus, The University of Hong Kong


posterSocial Entrepreneurship for Health: Creative Aging explores how business may drive social change in ways that deliver tangible benefits to the health of society.

The world’s population is aging on an unprecedented scale, raising fundamental social, cultural, economic, and political issues. Today, in many countries around the world, there is a new focus on prioritizing aging in healthcare and on end-of-life issues.

In many ways, Hong Kong is exemplary of an aging and increasingly urban global environment, with life expectancy in the HKSAR the longest in the world for men and the second longest for women. As in many countries, there is urgent debate in Hong Kong about the needs of the aging population, which remains under-resourced, in part as a result of constraints on state funding. At the same time, evidence suggests that health outcomes and the experience of aging vary greatly from setting to setting, determined by the arrangements of healthcare systems, social factors, and cultural contexts.

Against this backdrop, Creative Aging calls for fresh thinking about aging, and considers how social enterprises that have enabled new approaches to promoting creative and healthy aging in one setting may be transferred successfully to another. Participants reflect on ways of building innovative and sustainable social businesses, which contribute to the betterment of an aging society, addressing such themes as: community participation, the importance of ‘place’ in aging, intergenerational solidarity, and creative aging.

Tim Carpenter, the founder of the California-based, non-profit EngAGE, advocates a whole-person approach to creative and healthy aging in which seniors are provided with opportunities to engage with the community through the arts. He will share his experience at EngAGE and his efforts on revitalizing and transforming the conventional idea of aging through an integrated program of creative intervention.

Patrick Cheung, the founder of Dialogue in the Dark Hong Kong and the Chairman of the Hong Kong Social Entrepreneurship Forum, will talk on sustainability of elderly healthcare services, with a particular focus on aging in place.  In 2012, he co-founded the Jade Club, an organization with a mission to provide high-quality, affordable and self-sustainable community and home elderly care service through civic participation and innovative operational models.

Dr. Anna Hui, a researcher at the City University of Hong Kong, will discuss creativity in aging populations. She is currently the principal investigator of a project that investigates the benefits of creativity enhancement on an aging population, and how an intergenerational workforce can be utilized in the creative industries.

Dr. Robert Peckham, co-director of the Centre for the Humanities and Medicine, will chair the session.

EngAGING Hong Kong is part of the ExCEL3 project ‘Social Entrepreneurship for Health: Enhancing Networks and Building Capacities’ supported by the Faculty of Social Sciences and the Hong Kong Jockey Club.

For further enquiries, please contact us.