International Conference

„Planning Later Life – Bioethics and Politics in Aging Societies“


July 10th – 12th 2013

Göttingen (Germany)


Organized by

Silke Schicktanz and Mark Schweda (Medical Ethics and History of Medicine Göttingen) and Frank Adloff (Department of Sociology Erlangen-Nürnberg)



Medicine has become a central element in planning and shaping human life. Especially the second half of life turns into a focus of individual and political planning and decision making in the light of various medical and health care policy scenarios. On the one hand, aging and old age are often perceived as a problem and an increasing burden for medicine, care providers and social security systems dealing with growing populations of persons living with fragility and dementia. On the other hand, new diagnostic, therapeutic and preventive options in the field of preventive medicine and anti-aging encourage the idea of self-determined and successful aging that is to be prudently modeled and actively shaped.

The aim of the international conference Planning Later Life – Bioethics and Politics in Aging Societies is to critically reflect on the relevance of modern medicine in shaping the lives and situations of aging and elderly persons today. It discusses and contrasts the ethical, social and political consequences of demographic change in the field of medicine and health care as well as the implications of the rise of anti-aging medicine and prevention, and recent trends in dementia research and care. The conference is interdisciplinary, combining perspectives from ethics, sociology, cultural anthropology and nursing sciences. Among the confirmed keynote speakers are

  • Norman Daniels (Harvard),
  • Paul Higgs (London),
  • François Höpflinger (Zürich),
  • Søren Holm (Manchester),
  • Andreas Kruse (Heidelberg),
  • S. Jay Olshansky (Chicago),
  • Thomas Rentsch (Dresden),
  • Dieter Sturma (Bonn),
  • Perla Werner (Haifa).

Apart from the plenary sessions, there will be open parallel sections discussing the changing images of old age between autonomy and dependency, the evidence and benefits of anti-aging and prevention, problems of personal identity and dementia as well as solidarity and social responsibility in future healthcare policies.





Mark Schweda
University of Göttingen
Medical Ethics and History of Medicine
Humboldtallee 36
D-37073 Göttingen
Phone: +49 (0)551-39-9316
Fax: +49 (0)551-39-9554