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It is no secret that the world’s population is ageing. As fertility declines and life expectancy increases, the proportion of older people is projected to grow across the world. Therefore, it is increasingly important to develop metrics that assess the effectiveness of policies and programmes affecting older people.
The 2002 Madrid International Plan of Action on Ageing (MIPAA) is central to this measurement agenda and has three priority areas:
- Older persons and development (in particular social protection);
- Advancing health and well-being into old age; and
- Ensuring enabling and supportive environments.
Fifteen years later, it is timely to assess the effectiveness of the Plan and indeed review it is a theme of this week’s UN Commission for Social Development.
The MIPAA started with great promise as one of the only international policy frameworks to focus on older people. The latest UN review of MIPAA shows that despite progress, its implementation remains uneven across both countries and the three priority areas. Major constraints include lack of resources, political will and data.
In such introspection, another critical question is how the MIPAA stays relevant when the international community is committed instead to its newest and most comprehensive policy framework to date, the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.