Investigating integrated knowledge translation approaches to aging research in Sub Saharan Africa

Authors: Andrea Rishworth*, Pennsylvania State University
Topics: Medical and Health Geography
Keywords: integrated knowledge translation, aging, Sub-Saharan Africa
Session Type: Virtual Paper
Day: 4/8/2021
Start / End Time: 8:00 AM / 9:15 AM
Room: Virtual 20
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


The rise of aging populations has important corollaries for health systems, socio-cultural relationships, and political-economic structures. These corollaries are, by definition, geographically contingent and shaped by a complex set of place-based dynamics. In Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA), the implications of population aging must be addressed within the context of continuing high rates of maternal mortality, infectious diseases, and changing family structures. In these settings, it is crucial that the allocation of resources for the promotion of health in old age are contextually relevant and evidence informed. The World Health Organization has called for research addressing older people’s health to be effectively translated to policy, yet few empirical examples exist for knowledge translation related to aging, health and wellbeing in in SSA. Fewer still are any examples of knowledge translation that involve end users in the process of knowledge creation. This essential model of integrated knowledge translation (iKT) was used in a case study of aging, health and wellbeing in Uganda revealing that while important barriers exist for healthy aging in resource constrained contexts, the application of an iKT approach that privileges the co-production of knowledge presents important opportunities for the promotion of health in old age, that otherwise would remain obfuscated. While important contextual differences exist, the fundamental process of iKT is transferable across geographical contexts, and urgently needed in the context of global population aging.

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