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The population of the world has grown old. It has been estimated that in 2050, there will be more people aged 60 than those aged 15 and that the mean age will have risen from 26 years of age today to 36 years of age. The causes of this are a combination of increased life expectancy and a falling birth rate. At the same time the generation gap between younger people and older people has widened, especially in industrial countries in the West, such as the USA, Great Britain and the Netherlands. The pattern in Sweden is not very different from this. Here too older people and younger people are, to a very large extent, distanced from each other (Boström, 2001a).Meetings of various kinds between different generations which have been arranged to compensate for this mutual loss of interchange of experience and knowledge are known as “intergenerational programmes”. Intergenerational initiatives and projects have been developed in various industrial countries in order for younger and older people to meet more frequently than is often otherwise the case.A definition of intergenerational learning and related projects was adopted at a meeting attended by researchers from ten different countries (China, Cuba, Germany, Japan, the Netherlands, Palestine, South Africa, Sweden, Great Britain, and the USA), which had been arranged by UNESCO’s Institute of Education, in Hamburg, in 1999. The common definition is as follows:

http://210.101.116.28/W_ksi1/01308689_pv.pdf

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