Manchester Urban Ageing Research Group (MUARG)

Understanding the relationship between population ageing and urban change has become a major issue for public policy.

An emerging theme is 'age-friendly cities and communities'. This approach, initiated by the World Health Organization, reflects the need to develop supportive urban communities for older people.

Key characteristics of an age-friendly community include the built environment, social inclusion and service provision.

Our research supports the promotion of age-friendly environments at global, EU, national and local level. We have a particular focus on understanding issues relating to social exclusion and pressures facing older people in areas subject to economic decline.

Aims and objectives

  • To undertake interdisciplinary research on urban ageing.
  • To develop international collaboration in research on ageing and urbanisation.
  • To promote new methodologies and knowledge exchange activities which involve older people as co-investigators.
  • To develop an understanding of the role of arts and culture in research on urban ageing.
  • To secure internal and external funds to support work on urban ageing.

Research interests

Our research spans:

  • inequalities in later life;
  • social exclusion and poverty;
  • rural/urban boundaries;
  • ageing and mobility;
  • ethnicity;
  • migration; and healthcare systems;
  • housing design and climate change;
  • comparative studies; and
  • developing age-friendly cities.

We work closely with partners in government and third sector organisations.

Selected grants and projects

Buff el, T. Urban Ageing and Social Exclusion. Funding: UK ESRC Phillipson, C. and Goulding, A. Tackling Social Isolation in Urban Environments. Funding: Big Lottery UK

Hou, B. with Nazroo, J., Banks, J. and Marshall, A. The impact of migration and urbanisation on the health and well-being of older people in China: analysis of the CHARLS study.

Remillard-Boilard, S. Age-Friendly Cities: A cross-national perspective. Funding: Canadian Social Science Research Council, The University of Manchester and Manchester City Council.

Principal investigator

Dr Tine Buffel, MICRA, School of Social Sciences: