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31 July 2012

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UNECE Ministerial Conference: Ensuring a society for all ages: promoting quality of life and active ageing,
18 - 20 September 2012 in Vienna, Austria

VIENNA, 31 July (UN Information Service) - Thirty years after the first World Assembly on Ageing took place in Vienna in 1982 the city will be once more hosting a major international event on ageing: the UNECE Ministerial Conference Ensuring a society for all ages: promoting quality of life and active ageing will take place from 18 to 20 September 2012. The Conference will serve to review progress made in implementing the Madrid International Plan of Action on Ageing (MIPAA) and its Regional Implementation Strategy (RIS), both adopted in 2002, and to define the post-2012 agenda on ageing.

High-level participants

An expected 450 participants will include ministers and high-level officials from 56 UNECE member States as well as representatives of European and international organizations, scientists, older persons and non-governmental organizations representing them. Ministers from Canada, Sweden, Cyprus, Slovenia, the Republic of Moldova, Belgium, Liechtenstein, Bulgaria, Armenia and Slovakia have confirmed their participation. Ministerial participation is also expected from the Russian Federation, and the United States of America. EU Commissioner Lázló Andor will give the opening speech. Renowned scientists will take prominent roles during the Conference, including Prof. Susanne Iwarsson (Lund University, Sweden), Olga Mikhailova (Saint Petersburg Institute of Bioregulation and Gerontology, Russian Federation), Prof. Ursula Lehr (Chairperson of BAGSO, the German Federal Head Organization of Senior Citizens' Organizations, Germany), Robert Anderson (European Foundation for the Improvement of Working and Living Conditions, Dublin, Ireland), Prof. Clemens Tesch-Römer (German Centre of Gerontology in Berlin, Germany), Prof. Bernd Marin (European Centre for Social Welfare Policy and Research, Austria) and Juhani Ilmarinen (Ilmarinen Consulting, Finland).

The agenda

The Conference begins on 18 September 2012 with an NGO and a Scientific Forum. On 19 September the programme continues with a plenary session followed by expert panels on the following topics:

The high-level segment on 20 September 2012 will begin with a plenary session followed by Ministerial panels. A Panel discussion between Ministers and civil society representatives will be dedicated to the topic of Stimulating intergenerational dialogue and solidarity between the generations: a shared responsibility. Ministerial panels on the topic Ensuring A Society for All Ages: Promoting Quality of Life and Active Ageing will take up different aspects from the expert panels and culminating in a plenary session expected to lead to the adoption of the Ministerial Declaration. This outcome document shall highlight the future priorities for the third implementation cycle of the Madrid International Plan of Action on Ageing and its Regional Implementation Strategy (2013 - 2017). Declarations from the NGO and the Scientific Forums will be taken into consideration for the Ministerial Declaration. A good practice exhibition will be shown at the conference, illustrating ageing-related policy and practice throughout the region.

Active ageing

The Conference coincides with the 2012 European Year for Active Ageing and Solidarity between Generations. The Conference underlines the importance of investing in policy-frameworks that enable individuals to be active throughout their life-course and until old age. Active ageing and solidarity between generations represent important opportunities. Therefore active ageing has been prominent on the agenda of the UNECE work on ageing in the region, encouraging member States to exchange experiences on good practices and to agree on new and promising strategies and approaches.

The Ministerial Conference is jointly organized by the Federal Ministry of Labour, Social Affairs and Consumer Protection and the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe. More information can be found on the conference website:

Press and media are invited to participate as observers and to report on the event. The press centre will provide computer and printing facilities. Wireless internet access is available in the venue.

Press conference: 20 September 11.15 am - 11.45 am

Rudolf Hundstorfer, Federal Minister for Labour, Social Affairs and Consumer Protection
Sven Alkalaj, UNECE Executive Secretary László Andor, EU-Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion


Please contact stating your name, address, medium und function (job title, e.g. editor in chief) and sending a copy of your press ID, unless you are accredited with UNOV or UNOG.


Wollzeile 27a
A-1010 Vienna


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