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Speakers

Keynote speakers

Ritu Sadana

Ritu Sadana 

Keynote:
Aging - Looking in the future
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Ritu Sadana has more than 30 years of experience championing health equity in both public and private sectors in low, middle- and high-income countries. Sadana led the research and writing of the World Health Organization’s Decade of Healthy Ageing: baseline report, coordinated the development of the first WHO Global Strategy on Ageing and Health, including conceiving the objective towards the UN Decade of Healthy Ageing 2021-2030, and co-authored the WHO World Report on Ageing and Health.   

Sadana also leads the WHO Secretariat for the independent Council on the Economics of Health for All, which recently issued its Final Report. The document calls for a radical reorientation of economic and financial policy to increase public and private investments for health in multiple sectors.   

She is the principal investigator of WHO’s efforts to fill in evidence gaps and implement a life course approach in practice that connects a good start to life, healthy development and healthy ageing by involving policymakers, researchers and civil society in health, education, labour and social protection.   

She holds a Doctor of Science from Harvard University, an MSc in Public Health and a BA from University of California Los Angeles (UCLA), with expertise in economics, epidemiology, demography and health policy. Sadana has over 200 scientific and policy publications. 

Twitter:  @RituSadana

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DY-Suharya

DY Suharya

Regional Director of Alzheimer’s Disease International (ADI) Asia Pacific Region, founder of Alzheimer’s Indonesia
Keynote:
From grassroots advocacy to systemic change
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DY Suharya has more than 20 years of experience in public health, public private partnerships and communication. She worked as a Health Communication Consultant with the World Bank, WHO and UNICEF. She has taken the lead in supporting 20 Alzheimer’s Disease International members in the Asia Pacific in advocacy, leadership and capacity building initiatives.

Suharya holds a Master of Public Health (MPH) from Curtin University, Australia, a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism, from Ohio State University, USA and a Diploma in English Literature from the University of Indonesia.

  • In 2022, the UN Decade of Healthy Ageing recognized Suharya as a “Healthy Ageing 50” leader for transforming the world to be a better place to grow older. Recently, she was also recognized as a Global Ageing Influencer by Ageing Asia.

Suharya holds a Master of Public Health (MPH) from Curtin University, Australia, a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism, from Ohio State University, USA and a Diploma in English Literature from the University of Indonesia.

Twitter handle: @DYSuharya

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Tomson-Highway

Tomson Highway

Award-winning playwright, author, musician, and social worker
Keynote:
Reframing aging narratives
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A playwright, author, musician, and multilingual speaker, Tomson Highway is an award-winning and multi-talented Aboriginal artist. Highway has also found time to complement these great accomplishments with his work as a social worker, native artistic director, adjunct professor, and world traveller.

A full-blood Cree, he is a registered member of the Barren Lands First Nation. He lived through the residential school system, faced prejudice, and struggled to have his work recognized.  

He’s the author of numerous bestselling books including Kiss of the Fur Queen and Permanent Astonishment: Growing Up in the Land of Snow and Sky. He achieved international recognition with his multi-award-winning play THE REZ SISTER, followed by the even more successful DRY LIPS OUGHTA MOVE TO KAPUSKASING. It was the first Canadian play in the history of Canadian theatre ever to receive a full production and extended run at Toronto’s legendary Royal Alexandra Theatre.  

A member of the Order of Canada and the recipient of at least 10 honorary doctorates, Highway has shaped the development of aboriginal theatre in both Canada and around the world. He is one of Canada’s foremost aboriginal and creative voices. 

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Panelists

Susan Walsh

Susan Walsh

Senior’s Advocate, Newfoundland and Labrador
Panel:
Why older adults need advocates
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Armed with a bachelor of social work degree, Susan Walsh began her career as a frontline social worker in mental health. Soon she realized that to really help people she needed to have an impact at the decision-making level. She completed her master of social work degree, specializing in policy, from the University of Toronto and spent 31 years in progressive leadership positions within numerous departments of the Newfoundland and Labrador provincial government focused on mental health, geriatrics, disabilities, child welfare, income support, indigenous services, municipal affairs and executive council. Walsh led several reform initiatives and served on various provincial and national boards. Her most recent role, prior to her appointment as Newfoundland and Labrador’s Seniors’ Advocate in June of 2022, was deputy minister of the Department of Children, Seniors and Social Development. She was also the provincial lead deputy minister for the Federal/Provincial/Territorial National Committee on Social Services responsible for seniors, income support, and child welfare in the country. 

After a 30-year career inside the “system”, Susan finally realized the secret to creating real change and entered the world of advocacy. Susan has a unique perspective on the role of seniors’ advocacy and how to achieve it. 

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Carolyn Cooper

Carolyn Cooper

Aged Care Commissioner, New Zealand
Panel:
Why older adults need advocates

Breakout session:
Transforming long-term care
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Carolyn Cooper is New Zealand’s first Aged Care Commissioner. She was appointed in March 2022 to provide strategic oversight of health and disability services for older people in all settings. In addition to being a statutory decision maker on complaints about care provided to older people, Carolyn strongly advocates for older people’s rights to quality health and disability services to support them to age well. Her 40-year career spans governance, executive and clinical leaderships roles across the public and private sector in New Zealand and Australia. Previously, she was the managing director and lead nurse for Bupa Villages and Care New Zealand, which supports more than 5,500 senior residents nation-wide. Carolyn began her career as a registered general and obstetrics nurse and has since held leadership positions across the health sector in aged care and hospital and specialist services. She is passionate about using innovation and collaboration as tools to achieve great quality of care and life for older people. She brings to her roles her lived experience caring for older people as a daughter and niece. 

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Karen D. Lincoln

Karen D. Lincoln

Professor, Dept. of environmental and occupational health, & director of the Center for Environmental Health Disparities Research, Public Health Program, University of California, Irvine. Founder director of Advocates for African American Elders
Panel:
Why older adults need advocates

Breakout session:
Ageism and discrimination: Start here, start now
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Karen D. Lincoln is a social worker and sociologist with expertise in social determinants of health disparities. Her research focuses on improving the health and well-being outcomes for Black Americans, older adults and minoritized persons by investigating the psychosocial, behavioral, and biological mechanisms that link social determinants to health and well-being.   

Prof. Lincoln has published over 80 articles and book chapters in the areas of social stress, aging and health disparities, and is an active public scholar and aging advocate, with op-eds in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and other media outlets focused on long-term care and policies to support poor seniors.

She is a Fellow of the Gerontological Society of America, a Hartford Faculty Scholar, an Encore Public Voices Fellow, and a Next Avenue Influencer in Aging. She was ranked third among the most influential African American social work scholars in the United States and was named among the Top 2% of Scientists Worldwide by Elsevier and Stanford University in 2022. 

Twitter handle: @KarenDLincoln

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Session presenters

Hiroko Akiyama

Hiroko Akiyama

Professor emeritus and visiting professor at the Institute of Gerontology and Institute for Future Initiatives, University of Tokyo
Breakout session:
Age-friendly communities: Redesigning communities for a highly-aged society
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Hiroko Akiyama is a widely recognized gerontologist and an expert on issues of global aging. She is currently a visiting professor at the Institute of Gerontology and Institute for Future Initiatives at the University of Tokyo. Professor Akiyama has conducted several cross-national surveys and is known for a long-running research on the elderly in Japan—tracking the aging patterns of approximately 6,000 Japanese elderly over 35 years. She also initiated social experiment projects that pioneer re-designing communities to meet the needs of a highly aged society. Her recent work includes the Kamakura Living Lab, a platform for open innovation to address challenges faced by citizens by a method of co-creation among users, industry, governments and academia. The Lab was started in 2017 in the seaside city of Kamakura with a rapidly aging society.

Professor Akiyama started the Institute of Gerontology at University of Tokyo in 2006. She was the vice president of the Science Council of Japan. She received her Ph.D. in psychology from the University of Illinois and served as a fellow at the US National Institute on Aging and as a research professor at the University of Michigan’s Institute for Social Research.

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Don Ezra

Don Ezra

Retirement expert and author
Breakout session:
Rethinking retirement policies: Paying for your future
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Don Ezra is happily retired! In his previous existence, he was Global Co-Chair of Consulting for Russell Investments, enjoyed travelling to work with clients in many countries, and says he learned much more from them than they did from him. He must have done something right because the Employee Benefit Research Institute gave him their 2004 award “for extraordinary lifetime contributions to Americans’ economic security.” He used to consult to pension funds, but after he retired his focus changed completely to helping individuals to a happy life after full-time work. He authored several books on pension funds and retirement and co-hosted the podcast Life Two.

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Jordana Globerman

Jordana Globerman

Graphic facilitator and strategy, user-experience (UX) and service designer
Session:
Co-design
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Jordana is a strategy, user experience and service designer from Ottawa, Canada and an experienced graphic facilitator. She has worked internationally to help clients across sectors solve complex problems by putting people at the centre of solutions.

Her past clients include the Government of Canada, PWC, KPMG, Fast Company, and the Public Service Alliance of Canada. Her co-design projects include a national strategy and service design project focused on accessibility with industry leaders and diverse users for the federal government; creative coaching for Fast Company's Innovation Festival; and leading and co-developing methodology for the first Rapid Impact Assessment using Design Thinking for the New Horizons for Seniors Program.

Jordana blends systemic design approaches with visualization, foresight and strategic planning for a unique approach that enables diverse minds to collaboratively tackle wicked problems. Jordana has spoken about her approaches at the Institute of Public Administrator's Canada Conference in Winnipeg (August 2019), the World Conference on Qualitative Research in Portugal (October 2019) and the Disability and Work Conference in Ottawa (November 2019). 

Twitter handle: @JordanaBetty

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Terje Hagen

Terje P. Hagen

Professor, Dept. of Health Economics and Health Management, University of Oslo
Breakout session:
Health care for aging populations: Better health, better aging
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Terje P. Hagen is one of Norway’s leading health service analysts. He is a professor at the department of health economics and health management at the University of Oslo. His works cover different forms of financing systems and organizations, their impact on patients' use of healthcare services and an individual's health. Recent analyses include evaluations of initiatives in primary care to reduce the number of admissions to somatic hospitals. Hagen also works on the overall effect on patients’ mortality and health from fundamental changes in the features of healthcare systems such as reduction in hospital length of stays and the transition from institution-based to home-based primary care services. 

Norway stands out as a country well developed in health services with relatively high user satisfaction and high life expectancy. In his speech, Hagen will focus on how the Norwegian tax-based health system is designed and how recent reforms have affected the performance of the system. 

In addition to his professorship at the University of Oslo, Hagen has served as consultant for the Norwegian Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Health, several of Norway’s health authorities, and at the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). 

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Theo Kocken

Theo Kocken

Director, Your 100-Year Life, chairman and co-founder of Cardano Development Foundation, professor of Risk Management, VU University
Session:
Q&A following film screening

Breakout session:
Rethinking retirement policies: Paying for your future
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Theo Kocken (100 years in 2064) is professor of Risk Management at VU University Amsterdam, extraordinary professor at NWU University (South Africa) and founder of the Anglo-Dutch pension investment & risk management firm Cardano. He is also the chairman/co-founder of the Cardano Development Foundation that focuses on improving financial inclusion in low-income markets. 

Before founding Cardano, he was head of Market Risk at ING and Rabobank. He graduated in Business Administration and Econometrics and received his PhD at VU University Amsterdam. 

Over the past 30 years he has published many books and articles on risk management, pension fund design and financial markets. He is also a producer of documentaries. Amongst others “Boom Bust Boom” (2015) on the endogenous (human) origins of financial crises and “Your 100 Year Life” (2022), discussing the worldwide aspects of aging and a call to make better use of our human capital at elderly age. 

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Sabina Misoch

Sabina Misoch

Head, Institute for Ageing Research (IAF), University of Applied Sciences of Eastern Switzerland (OST)
Breakout session:
Science, technology and aging: Finding solutions through age-tech
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Sabina Misoch is a research professor and heads the Institute for Ageing Research (IAF) at the University of Applied Sciences of Eastern Switzerland (OST) in St. Gallen, Switzerland. She holds a Ph.D. in sociology and her research focuses on aging, technology acceptance, ICT, social robotics, identity work, and longevity.

She is currently leading several projects on technologies for older adults including robotics, identity work in the transition to retirement, digital skills of 50+, and palliative care in rural regions of Switzerland. She is also leading the largest national collaborative project AGE-INT in Switzerland to address the challenges of demographic change.

An active member of the Swiss Society of Gerontology and the German Society of Gerontology and Geriatrics, Professor Misoch also serves on the foundations and administrative boards of several organizations for senior citizens.

She is recognized as an international expert on ICT, technologies, and aging for various commissions.

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Carole Osero-Ageng’o

Carole Osero-Ageng’o

Global Initiatives Lead and Africa Regional representative, HelpAge International, advocate at the High Court of Kenya
Breakout session:
Climate change, emergency and older adults: Not leaving anyone behind
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Carole Osero-Ageng’o is a respected, multilingual human rights lawyer and leader. She is an excellent negotiator, people connector, mentor, and policy influencer with broad regional and global experience. 

As the Africa regional representative at HelpAge International, she influences policy advocacy around aging, women’s rights, sexual reproductive health and rights (SRHR), gender, governance, climate change, and conflict management. She also leads HelpAge International’s strategic global initiatives for the rights, well-being, and dignity of older persons.  

Previously, Osero-Ageng’o was the associate regional director for policy and advocacy at Planned Parenthood Global, senior program officer for Africa at the International Women’s Program of the Open Society Foundations, program officer for Africa at Equality Now, and legal counsel for the Federation of Women Lawyers in Kenya.  She started her career as a litigation and conveyancing lawyer in Kenya.

Osero-Ageng’o holds an LL. B (Hons) and an MA in International Conflict Management from the University of Nairobi. She also has a diploma in the Equal Status and Human Rights of Women from the University of Lund in Sweden. She works in English, French, German, Kiswahili, Dholuo, with fair knowledge of Gikuyu and Spanish.

Twitter Handle: @agengocarole

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Shruti Singh

Shruti Singh

Senior economist, Skills and Employment Division, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)
Breakout session:
Employment and workforce participation: The silver workforce
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Shruti Singh currently leads the work on ageing and employment policies. She joined the OECD in 2007, and has since then, led and co-authored several landmark reports on active ageing, career mobility and retention of older workers, promotion of age-inclusive workplaces, age diversity, disability, mental health and work policies. Shruti also co-leads the award-winning initiative Living, Learning and Earning Longer to support global companies reshaping employer practices and policies to nurture a multigenerational workforce. She has had articles, reviews and interviews published in a variety of publications including Journal of the Economic of Ageing, Le Monde and Financial Times.

In her previous roles at the OECD, Shruti was the Manager of the OECD Centre for Opportunity and Equality (COPE), as part of the Inclusive Growth Initiative. She has also written extensively on a wide range of labour market policy issues including Active Labor Market Policies and Displaced Workers policies aimed at labour-market reintegration of the unemployed and under-represented groups. Prior to joining the OECD, Shruti was a policy analyst at the Department for Work and Pensions in the United Kingdom where she was responsible for designing and providing policy advice on UK’s key labour market policies.

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Laura Carstensen

Laura Carstensen

Professor of Psychology and Public Policy, Stanford University, founding director of the Stanford Center on Longevity

Breakout:
Motivation across the lifespan

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Laura Carstensen

Laura Carstensen

Professor of Psychology and Public Policy, Stanford University, founding director of the Stanford Center on Longevity

Breakout:
Motivation across the lifespan

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Laura Carstensen

Laura Carstensen

Professor of Psychology and Public Policy, Stanford University, founding director of the Stanford Center on Longevity

Breakout:
Motivation across the lifespan

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Laura Carstensen

Laura Carstensen

Professor of Psychology and Public Policy, Stanford University, founding director of the Stanford Center on Longevity

Breakout:
Motivation across the lifespan

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Laura Carstensen

Laura Carstensen

Professor of Psychology and Public Policy, Stanford University, founding director of the Stanford Center on Longevity

Breakout:
Motivation across the lifespan

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Laura Carstensen

Laura Carstensen

Professor of Psychology and Public Policy, Stanford University, founding director of the Stanford Center on Longevity

Breakout:
Motivation across the lifespan

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Laura Carstensen

Laura Carstensen

Professor of Psychology and Public Policy, Stanford University, founding director of the Stanford Center on Longevity

Breakout:
Motivation across the lifespan

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