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This is an outstanding overview of policies and programs for housing and community for aging in America by 29 seasoned experts. "Independent for Life: Homes and Neighborhoods for an Aging America" edited by Henry Cisneros, Margaret Dyer-Chamberlain and Jane Hickie, is a thorough and detailed discussion of all aspects of aging in America, focusing on housing and community issues. Subdivided into 6 sections, 20 chapters, introduction and conclusion, and 336 pages, with numerous charts, graphs, and color photographs, it is like an encyclopedia in its scope.
The topics covered are shown below, according to the table of contents. These topics show the breadth of the comprehensive coverage of this volume.
I also found it fascinating to read about the writers, and their short bios at the end of each chapter. These are experts who have more than "been there, done that", and are leaders in their fields in creatively seeking solutions to providing homes and neighborhood care for our aging population.
Henry Cisneros is a former Secretary of HUD, four-term mayor of San Antonio, Texas, is also executive chairman of CityView. He is a member of the advisory boards of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Broad Foundation, and was president of the National League of Cities.
Laura L. Carstensen, founding director of the Stanford Center on Longevity, is professor of psychology at Stanford University. She is a member of the MacArthur Foundation Research Network on an Aging Society.
Jane Hickie is senior research scholar and director of the Politics, Scholars, and the Public Program at the Stanford Center on Longevity.
Foreword, by John W. Rowe
John W. Rowe is a professor in the Department of Health Policy and Management at Columbia University. Previously, he was chairman and CEO of Aetna Inc. and president and CEO of Mount Sinai NYU Health. He was professor of medicine and founding director of the Division on Aging at Harvard Medical School, as well as chief of gerontology at Boston's Beth Israel Hospital. Currently, he leads the MacArthur Foundation's Research Network on Aging.
PART I Introduction: Independent/ Successful Longevity
1. New Visions for Aging in Place, by Henry Cisneros
2. A Hopeful Future, by Laura L. Carstensen
PART II Demographics and Challenges
3. Changing Demographic Realities, by Adele M. Hayutin
4. Future Social and Economic Changes, by Anthony Downs
PART III Housing and Services
5. From Home to Hospice: The Range of Housing Alternatives, by Elinor Ginzler
6. Community Services, by Jennie Chin Hansen and Andrew Scharlach
PART IV Homes
7. The Home Environment and Aging, by Esther Greenhouse
8. Technology Solutions, by Eric Dishman
9. A Contractor's Perspective, by Greg Miedema
10. A Case Study: Interior Design for Aging in Place, by M. Robbins Black
11. Multifamily Housing, by Hipolito Roldan
12. A Case Study: The Freedom Home, by Keith Collins
PART V Neighborhoods
13. Healthy Communities, by Lawrence D. Frank
14. Local Community Action, by Ron Littlefield and Robert H. McNulty
15. Retrofitting Suburbs, by Ellen Dunham-Jones and June Williamson
16. Longevity and Urbanism, by Elizabeth Plater-Zyberk and Scott Ball
17. Neighborhood Development, by Christopher B. Leinberger and Michael Glynn
PART VI Strategies for Change
18. Vulnerable Populations, by Fernando Torres-Gil and Brian Hofland
19. Housing Finance, by Richard K. Green and Gary D. Painter
20. A Political Strategy, by Shirley Franklin and Jane Hickie
Conclusion: Aging in Place, by Henry Cisneros
"Independent for Life" is an important and useful addition to the professional library of housing and community practitioners, and is a new classic. The many authors are to be commended for their hard work and excellent presentations on this important topic, providing hope for good housing and community as all age in America.
Reviewed by David Hoicka