Healthy Ageing in Residential Places (HARP)

Health Ageing in Residential Places (HARP)

In collaboration with Ottawa’s Bruyère Research Institute, the HARP project focused on positive examples of healthy ageing in long-term residential facilities. Based on a broad view of health that includes mental, physical, emotional, social and spiritual aspects, the project sought to identify healthy ageing strategies for long-term residential care that allow staff and residents to live better, and perhaps longer, more fulfilling lives.

Research Questions:
What constitutes active, healthy ageing for women and men in residential care facilities?

What conditions support active, healthy ageing for residents and staff, taking gender, context and individual capacities into account in providing long-term residential care?

To develop new definitions of active, healthy ageing which include those who reside and those who work in long-term residential care.

To identify conditions which are the most promising in promoting and allowing active, healthy ageing for both staff and residents.

Comparative, collaborative, case studies are central to the project. They will provide detailed information on physical, economic, environmental, social, and behavioural conditions that shape and define healthy ageing for residents and staff in specific care facilities.

The main technique is the application of a new method in this field – rapid site-switching ethnography. It is designed to capture the rich detail necessary to identify strategies for active, healthy ageing by bringing local and foreign researchers together to study two facilities in each country. Their perspectives and observations will allow us to see relationships and activities that may have become invisible through familiarity or as a result of particular local approaches.

This project builds on and complements the SSHRC-funded Major Collaborative Research Initiative on “Re-imagining Long-term Residential Care: An International Study of Promising Practices” that involves two US states, five Canadian provinces, Sweden, Norway, Germany, England and Scotland.

  • Canada – Dr. Pat Armstrong – funded by CIHR
  • Sweden – Dr. Marta Szebehely, Stockholm University – funded by FAS
  • United Kingdom – Dr. Liz Lloyd, University of Bristol – funded by ESRC
  • Norway – Dr. Mia Vabø, Norwegian Social Research

Fact Sheet (English)
Fact Sheet (French)

HARP final report to The European Research Area in Ageing (ERA-AGE 2) joint research program