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New Ambition for Ageing report - Asset-based Approaches and Inequalities

6 Mar 2018 - 10:55 by helen.walker

Ambition for Ageing have released a briefing entitled Asset-based Approaches and Inequalities, looking at the risks of exacerbating inequalities that we know asset-based approaches can result in. The document highlights the need for recognition of the barriers faced by marginalised groups as a key part of asset-based work in order to avoid contributing to existing inequalities. A number of solutions to the issue are raised within the briefing, in addition to collecting some key findings from the Ambition for Ageing programme so far. 

The key findings from the briefing were:


  • People who are the most socially isolated are often also the most marginalised
  • If implemented without an understanding of marginalisation, asset-based approaches risk contributing to existing inequalities, excluding those who are the most socially isolated.


  • Members of marginalised groups need to be supported to be involved in genuine co-production and asset mapping
  • Targeted approaches for the identification and engagement of marginalised, minority, and socially isolated groups can be a way to meaningful and inclusive asset-mapping and co-production
  • Well-planned processes for enhancing community capacity are critical for meaningful engagement and in ways which motivate future forms of participation. Such engagement and support processes take time and require resources and expertise.

John Hannen, Programme Manager for the Ambition for Ageing Programme said, “Taking the learning from the Ambition for Ageing Programme so far and using GMCVO’s experience as lead partner on the programme, we have a good basis from which to look into this issue.

Over time, we have seen some brilliant examples of where asset-based approaches to building and developing communities have worked really well, but in the past we have also seen examples where such approaches have not been well applied and have had a negative impact on the most marginalised in our society.

With the increasing popularity and renewed interest in asset based working we hope this briefing will provide a dialogue point for those who use these approaches. With the challenges faced by many of the communities in Greater Manchester it is important we develop approaches that promote social, economic and political inclusion for all”.

The full briefing can be found on the Ambition for Ageing website - https://www.ambitionforageing.org.uk/sites/default/files/Briefing%20Note%20on%20Assets%20and%20Inequalities.pdf

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