Our research

Main elements of the FACTAGE research programme

Summary and overall aims

FACTAGE aims to generate and disseminate findings in response to the following questions:

  • How do levels in (healthy) life expectancy differ across socio-economic groups in EU countries?
  • How do the pension and labour market policy measures designed to expand working lives (current and future) interact with these trends in mortality and healthy life expectancy?
  • What role is played in that process by the different institutional arrangements within EU member states?
  • How do differential longevity gains and longer working careers affect (in)equality in the experience of ageing and well-being among older people?
  • Which policies and institutional settings can best promote fairness within and between generations?
  • And, at the same time further expand working lives?

FACTAGE Research

FACTAGE starts from the premise that there is substantial scope for increasing the length of average working lives and active ageing in its many facets, but realising this potential requires paying careful attention to questions of equality concerning the elderly, not least prospectively. Furthermore, there is the fundamental issue of how to adapt the requirement to work longer with intergenerational distribution concerns.

One core aim is to devise the necessary tools and then to carry out a comparative assessment of differential mortality risks, health and labour market inequalities. The project will recommend evidence-based policy scenarios for an equitable allocation of labour and retirement across populations and generations.


Given the project’s emphasis on inequality, FACTAGE will focus in particular on impacts on people with lower educational attainment, health limitations and disrupted work histories. The central concept guiding FACTAGE, namely well-being in later life, will reflect multiple dimensions, especially pension income, employment, health, work-life balance and subjective well-being.

FACTAGE will compare the employment and retirement options of older people with (healthy) life expectancy for socio-economic subgroups to ascertain how institutional design and reforms affect equity across generations. We further draw a distinction between policies suitable for the current generation of older people, and prospective policy scenarios.

Based on multidisciplinary research, FACTAGE will provide evidence on policy approaches across EU countries that are favourable to extending working careers and improving well-being in later life, whilst also generating wider societal, micro- and macroeconomic benefits.

FACTAGE has a strong focus on broad stakeholder outreach and encourage interested individuals, organisations and companies to get in touch.

FACTAGE Research focus