Achieving sustainable urban development with an ageing population: An “age-friendly city and community” approach

Jianbo Han, Edwin Hon Wan Chan, Queena Kun Qian, Esther Hiu Kwan Yung

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


The ageing population tends to be seen as a burden of cities’ future development. Thus, the public funds for older residents’ wellbeing are at risk of being cut back under the economic austerity due to the prevalent neoliberalism policy atmosphere. However, some cities set good examples to turn their older citizens into active contributors to sustainable urban development (SUD) by developing age-friendly cities and communities (AFCC). Taking Hong Kong as an example, this study aims to raise a strategy for policymakers, especially at the municipal level, to incorporate the concept of AFCC in SUD. Data were retrieved for our analysis from a published report of the Hong Kong Public Policy Research Fund project. A total of 15 AFCC and SUD policy factors were identified by using factor analysis. The correlations between these policy factors were evaluated and visualised in a synergetic effect network. According to the network, this study indicates that developing the silver hair market can be a suitable entry point to realise SUD by adopting an AFCC development. Isolation prevention, social sustainability and low-energy-consumption development are the supportive policy factors for the silver hair market. Specifically, respect, discrimination prevention, communication and information, age-friendly facilities, environmental safety and public transportation accessibility are five AFCC policy factors incorporated in the policy integration to enhance older residents’ wellbeing further. This study is an innovative attempt to develop a comprehensive model for the synergy between sustainable urban development and an age-friendly city and community using a correlation network. This study also provides a reference for other city governments to respond to population ageing positively.

Original languageEnglish
Article number8614
JournalSustainability (Switzerland)
Issue number15
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2021


  • Age-friendly development
  • Policy integration
  • Population ageing
  • Sustainable development
  • Urban economy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science (miscellaneous)
  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Building and Construction
  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Hardware and Architecture
  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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