Sustainable Care: Connecting People and Systems
How can we make 21st century systems of care sustainable? and how can citizens be empowered to have more control over how care resources are accessed and care costs distributed? The care of older, sick and disabled people is a timely and important topic: population ageing, modernising health and social care systems, and new ways of organising / supporting care work (paid and unpaid) are critical issues for governments worldwide. The sustainability of care is challenged by increasing population mobility and ageing and rising social inequalities which make commodified caring labour accessible to the most affluent but beyond reach for the less well-off, including many older, sick or disabled people.
Widening inequalities are challenging cultural practices, with important effects on care practices, which are often deeply embedded in familial and cultural values, yet under great pressure from economic and demographic change. This strain is felt most acutely among minority, migrant and indigenous populations, frequently drawn into ‘global care chains’ or facing care dilemmas within transnational family networks.
This research collaboration will analyse and compare these developments, assess their role in making care sustainable, theorise their impact and offer critical assessment of policy options.