The impact of place attachment on well-being for older people in high-density urban environment: a qualitative study

Yi Sun, Mee Kam Ng, Tzu Yuan Stessa Chao, Shenjing He, Sze Hin Mok

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

Abstract

Aging in place has become a popular social policy worldwide. This paper argues that well-being is an important outcome of aging in place, upon which older people develop autonomy and environmental proactivity. The temporal dimension of aging in place highlights development of place attachment, which includes place identity and place dependence. The study explores how older people, who live inhigh-density urban environments, make sense of well-being and place attachment by articulating their daily lives. Community dwelling older people aged 65 and above, who came from neighborhoods with high aging population and residential density but high and low median household incomes, were invited for focus group discussions. Multifaceted meanings of well-being include various dimensions that cover individual-collective and material-spiritual (psychological) construct. Meanings of place attachment include values of, bonding ties to, and memories about places. Three pathways are identified linking place attachment and multifaceted well-being. The study finds that social welfare and material richness are not the only determinants of well-being. Fulfillment of higher psychological needs, such as positive evaluation of life and self-actualization, should be emphasized by which older people can make the most of their life in old age.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Aging and Social Policy
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2022

Keywords

  • Aging in place
  • High-density cities
  • Hong Kong
  • place attachment
  • Well-being

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Demography
  • Gerontology
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies

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