Mobility and Accessibility of the Ageing Society. Defining Profiles of the Elderly Population and Neighbourhood

  • Mina Akhavan Politecnico di Milano
  • Giovanni Vecchio Politecnico di Milano
Keywords: Ageing population, Mobility and Accessibility, Profiles of the Older Adults, Well-Being and Quality of Life


A large body of literature already explores how mobility is associate with the well-being and quality of life of the elderly population. However, many studies so far have been widely discipline specific. This paper, thus, aims to critically review relevant mobility- and accessibility-related studies that, from varied disciplines, focus on the well-being of the older adults. To do so, the Capabilities Approach is assumed as a theoretical perspective able to convey how individual well-being is differently shaped and experienced by each person. More specifically, this study intends to consider how to define profiles of ageing mobilities, discussing a methodology for detecting different elderly populations and neighbourhoods. The relationship between urban mobility and quality of life in fact differs according to the examined populations and settings, involving features that are peculiar of the elderly. The possibility to define profiles contributes to develop different “narratives of ageing” that, according to the subjects and their territorial context, allows a more precise understanding of how varied forms of mobility contribute to a differently defined well-being and quality of life. The expected outcomes of this study are twofold: (i) to provide a theoretical framework with the complexity of factors in mobility, in order to be applied in future empirical research studies, in other words as the basis for further analyses with quantitative and qualitative methods.; (ii) a methodology for defining profiles of aging mobilities, considering elements that may be differently inflected according to the setting taken into exam.


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Author Biographies

Mina Akhavan, Politecnico di Milano

Mina Akhavan is currently a Postdoctoral Research Fellow and Adjunct Professor at Politecnico di Milano- Department of Architecture and Urban Studies, where she received a PhD degree in Spatial Planning and Urban Development (2015); a doctoral thesis on port infrastructure development dynamics and their impact on urban development. Her research interests also concern the impact of globalization and logistics network; transnational urbanism; new working spaces; and more recently she has been involved in a research on the mobility of the ageing society.

Giovanni Vecchio, Politecnico di Milano
Giovanni Vecchio is an urban planner and policy designer, currently research fellow at Politecnico di Milano. He received his PhD in Urban Planning, Design and Policy at Politecnico, and he has been visiting scholar in Colombia (Observatorio Urbano, Universidad de La Salle, Bogotá) and the Netherlands (Wageningen University). His research interests focus on urban mobility, individual capabilities, technologies, and community initiatives, working at the crossroad between human and territorial development.


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How to Cite
Akhavan, M., & Vecchio, G. (2018). Mobility and Accessibility of the Ageing Society. Defining Profiles of the Elderly Population and Neighbourhood. Tema - Journal of Land Use, Mobility and Environment, 9-22.
Special Issue 2018. SIET Elderly mobility