Evolving gender differences in health & care across cohorts

Topic: Sex, Gender and Health/Aging

Women live, on average, longer than men, but live a greater portion of their lives in poor health. In old age (60+) and in relation to older men, women are more likely to use care services and to be informal care-givers. Older adults’ health and care-giving/receiving are two clear examples of existing inequalities between men and women. FutureGEN aims to understand how entwined GENder inequalities in health and care-giving/receiving evolve across GENerations in connection with cultural and social contexts and individual realities, and how identified sex/gender inequalities may evolve in the FUTURE. Current gender inequalities in health and care can be attributed to present-day circumstances and to how people live their lives. Both are changing, but we know little about how these changes are shaping health and care and therefore cannot predict or ameliorate future sex/gender inequalities. Are health inequalities between men and women narrowing as women achieve greater economic independence? Will shifting cultural norms mean future generations of older men will provide more care? How are gender inequalities in health and care tied to socioeconomic conditions? As men and women have been found to self-assess their health differently, which measures of health avoid sex/gender bias? To answer these questions for Europe and North America, the multidisciplinary FutureGEN team will build on the expertise of its members to 1) apply novel quantitative methods to comparable international datasets and 2) obtain older people’s views through participatory research methods.

Project coordinator

Ricardo Rodrigues, PhD, European Centre for Social Welfare Policy and Research, Austria


Austria, Canada, Sweden

Institutions involved

European Centre for Social Welfare Policy and Research (Austria)

Queen’s University (Canada)

Karolinska Institutet (Sweden)





Check out the project’s website for academic publications : https://futuregen.euro.centre.org/publications/  

  • On 17-19 May 2022, the final project and Sounding Board meeting of FutureGEN took place in Stockholm. The meeting was hosted by the Karolinska Institutet. During the meeting the project teams from Austria, Canada and Sweden presented the main results emerging from the project so far and together with Sounding Board members discussed possible ways to further enhance the impact of FutureGEN and its findings. The meeting also served as the basis for preparing the end-of-grant plan. The FutureGEN project will continue until the end of the year 2022 with all results published on the project website (https://futuregen.euro.centre.org/).

FutureGen Sounding Board Meeting Team Photo