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Psycho-sociology, Gerontology and Aging: towards an economic and social revolution for society

Psycho-sociology, Gerontology and Aging: towards an economic and social revolution for society

Guest Editors:

Adnane Maalaoui (IPAG Business School, France)

Mustafa Ozbilgin (Brunel University, UK)

Tania Saba (University of Montreal, Canada) 

Erhan Aydin (Usak University, Turkey)

This SI aims at better understand the elderly through the theory of aging and by considering different areas of research, such as gerontology, economic, entrepreneurship, HRM and psycho-sociology. 
The aging process and how people experienced it, is one of the main topics of medical science, as it can have a direct effect on people's life expectancy. The importance of aging process in maintaining life satisfaction and well-being during the lifespan made it a subject of interest for individuals and different actors such as companies and public services. According to Austad (1997), the aging process refers to “the different developments and changes in the body's functions over time, the losses, the gains, and the perceptions resulting from these changes”. The mentioned process differs from one individual to another and is associated with both objective (physical degradation, the decline in perceptual and memory performance) and subjective (a person perception of his own aging) factors (Fontaine, 1999). Hence, in the senior segmentation, considering objective variables such as age or income is as important as considering subjective variables such as the perceived aging experience (Guiot, 2006).

Changes and their consequences on behaviors

As individuals become older, they face social, physical and cognitive difficulties that may affect their attitudes and behaviors (Greco, 1987, Schewe, 1989, Ostroff, 1989). Social changes in the elderly, like becoming grandparents, losing some social roles and trying to find the new ones, are particularly important as older individuals have to adapt them (Tamaro-Hans, 1999). Especially, retirement stands as one of the most significant events in one’s life and is mainly associated with the loss of social roles that individuals have to cope with.

Physical disorders which include the loss of sensorial abilities (Vanhamme, 2001) are also some other consequences of becoming old. Cognitive disorders cause decreasing intellectual capabilities (Mishara and Riedel, 1985; De Ladoucette, 1997), concentration or attention problems (Van der Linden, 1994; Boujon, 1995) as well as memorizing and retrieval information problems (Mishara and Riedel, 1985). These changes may have a great impact on information processing, such as the way the older individuals process any environmental stimulus (Moschis, 1994).
One of the major concerns caused by an aging population is the question of whether the working population will be productive enough to maintain economic growth as well as the serious impacts on workplaces. While striving to maintain a skilled and productive workforce, organizations and governments must face the challenges posed by an ageing generation, find diversified and innovative solutions (Wisse et al., 2015). Developing an active ageing strategy requires considering employers’ attitudes regarding older people, individuals’ perceptions of their end of career (Rabl & del Carmen Triana, 2014) and efforts made by governments in favour of active ageing (Saba, 2014).  The end-of-career trajectories of both men and women remain unpredictable, often uncertain and deserve attention.

Entrepreneurship literature suggests that the more aged people are, the less motivated they are in setting up a new business. Seniors have less appetite to engage in entrepreneurial activities (Curran and Blackburn, 2001; Hart et al., 2004; Levesque and Minniti, 2006) since the cost of the time factor increases with age and thus discourage seniors’ venture for entrepreneurship (Kautonen, Tornikoski and Kibler, 2011).
Moreover, whether consciously or unconsciously, aging is mainly associated with the perspective of death (Routledge and Arndt, 2005). As the people grow older, the time is shrinking for them and is perceived as being limited. This aspect of the aging experience may lead to different motivations and behaviors which the older individuals imply in the rest of their life.
Aging theories and topics of interest
Several theories have been developed by the psychology and gerontology to explain the motivations and behaviors of elderly. The “psychosocial development” theory suggests how death consciousness in the older individuals is associated with the acceptance of one’s destiny (Erikson, 1963). The “socio-emotional selectivity” (TSS) theory suggests time perception influences goals and motivations (Carstensen, Fung and Charles, 2003). The “Selection, optimization, compensation” (SOC) theory introduces three regulation strategies which contribute in successful aging (Baltes and Freund, 2003).
Some other discussed theories are the “theory of disengagement”, the “theory of activity”, the “theory of socialization” (Smith and Moschis, 1984) as well as “the theory of continuity” (Atchley, 1989). As it is suggested by these theories, the older individuals stand as an interesting target for the researcher as they use specific resources and strategies that enable them to maintain well-being and meaning in one’s life. In this perspective, entrepreneurship can be seen as a means to overcome social, cognitive and physical changes.
    This SI aims at better understand the elderly through the theory of aging by considering different areas of research, such as entrepreneurship, gerontology and psycho-sociology…etc.
 The topics of interests for this special issue include, but are not limited to:
•    Cognitive aging and decision making
•    Aging and resistance to change
•    Successful aging
•    Aging and employment
•    Aging and health
•    Aging and its effect on consumption behavior
•    The intergenerational relationships and their role in successful aging
•    The role of innovations and new technologies in subjective aging
•    The perspective of death and its effect on the elderly motivations
•    Creating or maintaining social acceptance for the eldery
•    Entrepreneurship as an opportunity for successful aging
We aim to propose with this SI a meaningful value to researchers on aging, practitioners and policy-makers.


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Wisse, B., van Eijbergen, R., Rietzschel, E. F., & Scheibe, S. (2015). Catering to the Needs of an Aging Workforce: The Role of Employee Age in the Relationship Between Corporate Social Responsibility and Employee Satisfaction. Journal of Business Ethics, 1-14. 


Deadline for submissions is October 1st, 2019. For more information, please feel free to contact: Adnane Maalaoui ([email protected]). Manuscripts must be submitted through the JOCM ScholarOne page

and author guidelines must be followed, see here.

Guest Editors:

Dr. Adnan Maalaoui is the Head of the chair Entrepreneurship and Disadvantage at IPAG Business School. His research mainly focuses on issues of entrepreneurship, and in particular disadvantaged entrepreneurs (elderly, refugees, disabled entrepreneurs, etc.) He works on topics such as: entrepreneurial intention and the cognitive approach to entrepreneurship. He mainly applies those questions to cases of diversity and social entrepreneurship. Adnan Maalaoui is the author of 20+ articles published in academic journals; he also authored articles published in professional journals, and in edited books. Adnane is also the author of a series of French speaking MOOCs on entrepreneurship.

Mustafa Özbilgin is Professor of Organisational Behaviour at Brunel Business School, London. He also holds two international positions: Co-Chaire Management et Diversité at Université Paris Dauphine and Professor of Management at Koç University in Istanbul. His research focuses on equality, diversity and inclusion at work from comparative and rela- tional perspectives. His work has a focus on changing policy and practice of equality and diversity management at work. He served as the editor-in-chief of the European Management Review (EMR), the official journal of the European Academy of Management (EURAM).

Tania Saba is a full professor at the School of Industrial Relations at the Université de Montréal and holds the Chair BMO-Diversity and Governance. Specializing in aging workforce, retirement and intergenerational differences, she has contributed over the course of her career to 17 book chapters and more than 50 articles. Her research on aging and retirement has received awards on a number of occasions, including a citation in "Nature", a "Citation of Excellence Award" from Emerald Management Reviews, and the "Verity International" recognition from the Canadian Association of Administrative Sciences. Tania Saba has held important executive positions from 2008 to 2017 (Chair of the School of Industrial Relations and then Associate Dean of Undergraduate Studies, Associate Dean of Graduate Studies and External Affairs and Acting Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences). Tania Saba is an affiliated researcher at the Interuniversity Research Centre on Globalization and Work (CRIMT) and at the Montreal Center for International Studies (CÉRIUM).

Dr. Judith Partouche is an Associate Professor and co-head of the Marketing Department at Paris School of Business. Her research interests focuses on consumer behavior and in particular: older individuals’ consumption behaviors, death consciousness and its effect on consumption, coping strategies and consumption, and the co-creation process between companies and consumers. She has also published articles in academic journals and presented her research at different national and international academic conferences.
Saeedeh R.Vessal is an Assistant Professor at Paris School of Business. Her research interests include consumer behavior and decision making. She has already presented her research at a number of national and international academic conferences.

Dr. Imen Safraou is an Associate Professor and co-head of the Marketing Department at Paris School of Business. Her research interests focuses on consumer behavior and in particular: older individuals’ consumption behaviors, aging and its effect on consumption, aging and entrepreneurial behavior, and advertising strategies toward the elderly. She has also published articles in academic journals and presented her research at different national and international academic conferences.

Erhan Aydin is an Assistant Prof. of Management and Organization in Usak University, Turkey. He earned his PhD in Brunel Business School, Brunel University London and MSc in Dokuz Eylul University, Turkey. He also was Recognized Visiting Researcher at Said Business School, University of Oxford from 2016 to 2017. He has three bachelor degrees in the fields of Business Administration, International Relations and Public Administration. His research interests include diversity, equality and inclusion at organisations, HRM and e-HRM. He is acting as a member of Academy of Management and European Academy of Management. He is amongst the reviewers of Gender, Work & Organization, Gender in Management: An International Journal, Journal of Organizational Change Management (Editorial Advisory Board Member) and Personnel Review. His research has been published in well- known publication houses such as Sage and Edward Elgar, and journals such as Journal of Organizational Change Management.