Already a member? Login
New to CARDI? Sign up
China's economic miracle has been accompanied by astonishingly rapid population ageing. Could growing old too fast end China's irresistible march out of poverty?
Where Shanghai leads, China follows. The city is ultra-modern - but also one of the fastest-ageing places on Earth.
Mr Ni is 72 years old, single and smartly turned out in a tweed cap. "This is a great place to talk to people," he says.
The in-store restaurant offers cheap food to tempt couples setting up home. But this part of the store is buzzing with the elderly, here to flirt and find love.
Mr Ni is a widower whose children have all left home.
"I find it easier to talk to women whose husbands have died," he says. "I know how hard it is."
Under protest, Ikea's managers have set up a special area for elderly singles. All over town, Shanghai is visibly growing old.
"Before he fell, he used to love going dancing," says 77-year-old Mrs Zhang.
She looks across at her husband who is rocking back and forth. Since an accident two years ago, he has been suffering from dementia.
Read more at BBC
A new report (Monday 14 April 2014) funded by the Centre for Ageing Research and Development in Ireland (CARDI) finds that many older people enjoy good social connections. However, a substantial number are at risk of social exclusion.