Publication details

Older adults' perception of gentrification in urban and rural environment

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Year of publication 2019
Type Appeared in Conference without Proceedings
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Social Studies

Description The experience of gentrification of older adults living in centres of big towns and in rural areas in the Czech Republic is the main aim of this presentation, focusing on attachment to place, coping strategies and quality of life in changing environment. The data from two mixed-methods research project are used: 1) the urban project features survey (n = 1921) and 46 in-depth interviews from three biggest cities, 2) the rural project focused on municipalities with less than 5.000 inhabitants and 20 in-depth interviews and survey (n = 1235) were used as a data sources (project Rural ageing: unanswered questions of environmental gerontology GA16-20873S). While in the urban context issues such as perceived safety, physical barriers and possibly exclusionary processes such as gentrification, higher costs of housing and goods are among the most prevalent, for rural populations, the major obstacles are determined by the municipality size and its accessibility. Rural areas whiteness rising dynamism by the ex-urban retirees moving to rural areas and back-to-urban mobility caused by unsustainable demands of physical work. The features of the symbolic and factual exclusion of older adults were found. Older adults are to a certain extent excluded from decision-making at the level of local and regional politics, especially in regard to the regeneration of surrounding environment and access to public spaces, physical exclusion from certain areas because of fear for personal safety or the presence of barriers, and the impact of these forms of exclusion on the quality of life in old age. At the same time, however, the data would emphasize that older adults as a group are not simply passive objects of change. Level of “satisfaction” tends to prevail despite the sometimes evident spatial ageism, and more or (rather) less apparent results of the gentrification processes. This finding could be explained by the concept of “attachment to place” and the biographical contextualization of one’s current personal situation which limits the intensity of possible negative evaluations.
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