The Value of the Elderly

A challenge for society is to make use of those things that older people are better at doing. Some abilities, of course, decrease with age. Those include abilities at tasks requiring physical strength and stamina, ambition, and the power of novel reasoning in a circumscribed situation, such as figuring out the structure of DNA, best left to scientists under the age of 30. Conversely, valuable attributes that increase with age include experience, understanding of people and human relationships, ability to help other people without your own ego getting in the way, and interdisciplinary thinking about large databases, such as economics and comparative history, best left to scholars over the age of 60. Hence older people are much better than younger people at supervising, administering, advising, strategizing, teaching, synthesizing, and devising long-term plans. I've seen this value of older people with so many of my friends in their 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s, who are still active as investment managers, farmers, lawyers and doctors. In short, many traditional societies make better use of their elderly and give their elderly more satisfying lives than we do in modern, big societies.


Their experience makes them better-skilled for certain professions, such as managing, and teaching.

Folksonomies: society aging elderly

/society (0.577406)
/health and fitness/aging (0.310732)
/family and parenting/eldercare (0.277943)

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Sociology (0.963708): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Gerontology (0.782460): website | dbpedia | freebase
Old age (0.778763): dbpedia | freebase
Ageing (0.745430): dbpedia | freebase

 How societies can grow old better
Proceedings of Meetings and Symposia>Speech:  Diamond, Jared (March 2013), How societies can grow old better, Ted Talk, Retrieved on 2013-11-27
  • Source Material []
  • Folksonomies: society age aging