Researching Social Gerontology: Concepts, Methods and Issues

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This accessible introduction to key concepts, methods and issues in social gerontological research presents a unique view of the research process by focusing on the relationships between conceptual definition and research methodology and between research, policy and practice. At a theoretical level, the text draws on the core gerontological concepts of age, dependency, social support and quality of life to illustrate their complexity, and the difficulties of measurement. On a practical level, the contributors present a number of methodological approaches which have been particularly useful in social gerontological research. Finally, they consider three critical issues: whether old people require special ethical consideration; the prospects for funding; and the importance of disseminating research effectively. Researching Social Gerontology has been specially commissioned by the British Society for Gerontology to outline current thinking in conceptual and methodological development, and the context in which gerontological research is being carried out. As such it will prove stimulating and useful for researchers at all levels, practitioners, policy-makers and those with a more general interest in the ageing process.