Completed CARDI Grant Projects

CARDI has to date awarded funding to 30 completed research projects and networks through its grants programme. These projects cover a wide spectrum of research, reflecting the huge range of issues relevant to the ageing research agenda. They bring together researchers from many disciplines including medicine, gerontology, economics, psychology, physics, geography and sociology to work together in a cross-sectoral and interdisciplinary manner.

Details and results of the projects are available in this section.


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Rural transport for older people in the north and south – understanding and meeting their needs

CARDI Involvement

Project Lead

Dr Aoife Ahern, University College Dublin, School of Architecture, Landscape and Civil Engineering

Researchers: 

  • Dr Aoife Ahern, School of Architecture, Landscape and Civil Engineering, University College Dublin
  • Professor Julian Hine, Centre for Property and Planning, Built Environment Research Institute, University of Ulster
  • Ms Emer Begley, Age Action Ireland

Rural transport for older people in Ireland, North and South – understanding and meeting their needs

This project, funded under Call 1 of CARDI’s Grants Programme and led by Dr Aoife Ahern, University College Dublin, examines the transport needs of vulnerable older people, especially in rural areas.

The aim of the project was to establish the current transport needs of older people in rural areas, and how these needs are being addressed.

CARDI grant programme

Social Exclusion and Older People in Diverse Rural Communities

CARDI Involvement

Project Lead

Professor Eamon O’Shea, Irish Centre for Social Gerontology, National University of Ireland, Galway

Researchers: 

  • Dr Kieran Walsh, The Irish Centre for Social Gerontology, National University of Ireland Galway
  • Dr Michael Murray, Institute of Spatial and Environmental Planning, Queen's University Belfast
  • Dr Sheelah Connolly, Centre for Clinical and Population Studies, Queen's University Belfast
  • Mr Mark Allen and Ms Caroline McGuire, Rural Community Network
  • Ms. Martina Gavin, FORUM, Rural Community Development Organisation
  • Dr John McDonagh, Department of Geography, National University of Ireland Galway
This will be the first study to address the important question: is rural Ireland a good place to grow old?

The project will be carried out by Healthy Ageing in Rural Communities Research Network (HARC) established with funding from CARDI’s Grants Call 1. It brings together multidisciplinary researchers from NUIG and Queen’s University Belfast with the Rural Community Network and FORUM Letterfrack.

Socio-economic deprivation and the risk of age-related cognitive dysfunction among older people

CARDI Involvement

Project Lead

Professor Helene McNulty, University of Ulster
  • Professor Adrian Moore, Health and Health Care Geography, University Ulster
  • Dr Leane Hoey, Human Nutrition, University Ulster
People who live in disadvantaged areas have a greater risk of developing cognitive dysfunction than people in better off areas, a study by Professor Helene McNulty and colleagues at the University of Ulster has found.
CARDI grant programme

Stay active - the physical activity, ageing and health study

CARDI Involvement

Project Lead

Dr Elaine Murtagh, Mary Immaculate College

Researchers: 

  • Professor Marie Murphy, Physical Activity and Health, University Ulster
  • Dr Niamh Murphy, Physical Activity and Public Health, Waterford Institute of Technology
  • Dr Catherine Woods, Physical Activity and Public Health, Dublin City University
  • Dr Aoife Lane, Research Methods and Statistics in Exercise and Health, Waterford Institute Technology
Regular moderate exercise is very important for maintaining good health in older age. This project will examine some of the factors linked with physical activity, such as socio-economic status, education level and access to leisure facilities.

It will assess the relationship between physical activity and self-reported health status as well as objective measures of cardiovascular disease risk.

Dr Murtagh’s research may help policy makers design interventions most likely to increase physical activity among older people.

The development of a novel, low-cost intervention games system designed to improve physical and mental wellbeing in older adults

CARDI Involvement

Project Lead

Dr Cathy Craig, Queen’s University Belfast

Researchers: 

  • Professor Fiona Newell, Trinity College Dublin
  • Dr Stuart Ferguson, Queen's University Belfast
Barriers to healthy ageing include declines in both physical and mental processes (e.g. postural control and cognition). As these processes are inter-connected, this project seeks to develop intervention programmes that train the body and the mind at the same time and are adapted to the needs of older people. 
CARDI grant programme

The development of end of life care standards for people with end stage dementia

CARDI Involvement

Project Lead

Dr Suzanne Cahill, Dementia Service Information and Development Centre, the School of Social Work and Social Policy, Trinity College Dublin

Researchers: 

  • The School of Social Work & Social Policy and the Dementia Services Information Centre
    Trinity College Dublin
  • Dr Suzanne Cahill, Dementia Service Information and Development Centre and the School of Social Work and Social Policy, Trinity College Dublin
  • Dr Max Watson, University of Ulster and Northern Ireland Hospice
  • Ms. Daphne Doran, Quality Initiatives Consultancy

This group will examine the different standards of care that exist for older people in long stay care and work with older people to draw up specific standards to meet the unique and complex end of life care needs of people with dementia.

Read the full report here.

CARDI grant programme

The dimensionality of mortality in Ireland

CARDI Involvement

Project Lead

Dr Declan French, Queen’s University Belfast

Researchers: 

  • Professor Michael Moore, Queen's University Belfast
Conventional modelling and forecasting of mortality rates relies on identifying regularities in the data but in a quite ad hoc way. Analysis helps us to understand how mortality decline has occurred, whether the same factors are responsible for declines in all age groups and whether these factors are related over time.

The objectives of the project are to undertake a statistical analysis of the static and dynamic factor structure of Irish mortality data using techniques recently developed in macroeconomic forecasting.

CARDI grant programme

The living standards of older people before and after the recession

CARDI Involvement

Project Lead

Emeritus Professor Paddy Hillyard, consultant

Researchers: 

  • Dr Demi Patsios, Consultant
This project builds on an earlier CARDI grant for the report ‘Inequalities in Old Age’ by updating the basket of living standards measures using the latest official data from Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. It will cover five household possessions, participation in social activities, economising behaviours and serious financial difficulties and older people’s views on living standards.

The objectives of the project are to develop a harmonised Irish Living Standards Index for Older People, highlighting the impact of the recession and its effect on inequalities.

CARDI grant programme

Universally designed built environments at the urban scale (UD-BUS network)

CARDI Involvement

Project Lead

Professor Mark Dyer, TrinityHaus, Trinity College Dublin

Researchers: 

  • Professor Mark Dyer and Dr Antoinette Fennell, TrinityHaus, Trinity College Dublin
  • Dr Yasemin Afacan, School of Planning, Architecture and Civil Engineering, Queen's University Belfast
  • Professor Ruth Morrow, PLACE, the Architecture and Built Environment Centre for Northern Ireland
  • Dr Gerald Craddock, National Disability Authority
This network plans to build a large partnership that will study how the urban environment, in planning, design, architecture and engineering, can be accessed and used to the greatest possible extent by people of all ages.
 

Objective

To establish a multidisciplinary network and explore how to effectively implement research findings from stakeholder consultation into design practice.
 
CARDI grant programme

Using aerobic exercise to promote brain plasticity and increase functional capacity in older people

CARDI Involvement

Project Lead

Professor Richard Carson, Queen’s University Belfast School of Psychology - Now TCD

Researchers: 

  • Professor Richard Carson, School of Psychology, Queen's University Belfast - Now TCD
  • Dr David Craig, Medicine, School of Dentistry and Biomedical Science, Queen's University Belfast
  • Professor Giuseppe De Vito, and Dr Brian Caulfield, School of Physiotherapy and Performance Studies, University College Dublin
  • Dr Madeleine Lowery, School of Electrical, Electronic and Mechanical Engineering, University College Dublin
  • Dr Katherine Johnson, School of Neuroscience, Trinity College Dublin
  • Dr Aine Kelly, Department of Physiology, Trinity College Dublin.
For this project experts from nine different disciplines will pool their expertise to examine how physical exercise can promote brain function and help older people recover from neurological illness.
 

Objective

To establish whether brain plasticity, as induced by standard (non-invasive) transcranial cortical stimulation techniques, is enhanced in older people following aerobic exercise. The project results will directly inform the design and implementation of exercise based programs that promote brain plasticity.
CARDI grant programme

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