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Scientific output, policy input

"In 1992, we started the LASA study to monitor older adults on various aspects over a long period of time. Alongside to physical health, we were also interested in mental health, cognitive skills, emotional development and social well-being. We were granted a 10-year subsidy by the Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport. Due to the combination of scientific and socially relevant output, our subsidy was renewed and funding has been secured until at least 2016. The dataset we have built over the years has really established itself as a leading resource for a variety of government bodies and social organisations when it comes to the aging population. In addition, each year the Ministry of Health may pose three policy-related questions that we will address using the LASA database, creating a direct relationship between scientific output and policy input. I think this project clearly illustrates how academic research and social relevance can go hand in hand. It is however essential to have the stamina and the commitment to engage in this type of research. But it pays off."

Marjolein Broese van Groenou, Professor of Informal Care, Faculty of Social Sciences, VU

The Longitudinal Aging Study Amsterdam (LASA) is a collaboration between several departments within VU and VUmc, with primary partners being the Institute for Research in Extramural Medicine (EMGO, Faculty of Medicine) and the Department of Sociology (Faculty of Social Sciences).