April 28, 2017

Elderly people. Credit: Ethan Prater / Flickr Creative Commons

Hopefully, you’re going to die a very long time from now, surrounded by friends and family, having lived a meaningful life. But exactly how far away is death going to be? When you look at the broad sweep of human history, life expectancy has pushed upwards (albeit not always in a straight line), almost doubling over the last century. And, it may well keep rising. Andrew Scott, co-author of The 100-Year Life: Living and Working in an Age of Longevity, believes that longer lifespans are about to alter society in some fundamental ways.

Three Takeaways:

  • Children born in the rich countries since 2000 have got a more than 50 percent chance of living to 100.
  • Increased lifespans changed the 20th century and led to the creation of two entirely new stages of life: the teenage years and retirement. Yes, it’s true, teenagers haven’t actually been with us for very long.
  • Scott says that our longer lives are already transforming society, noting that, “people are getting married later, buying cars, buying houses, having children later.”

More reading:

Andrew Scott, Culture, Kara Miller

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