Lessons From the Pandemic


A new article series exploring innovations and solutions to longstanding problems related
to caregiving, the digital divide across generations, the need for workplace flexibility,
financial security and more.


How do we take care of each other during a pandemic?
A health care crisis? When we’re 24 or 64? Our new podcast,
When I’m 64, aims to shed light on these challenges by bringing
together the real-life stories of caregivers and the insights of
leading experts.

Personal stories,
expert insights



Envisioning a New Map of Life

The mission of the Stanford Center on Longevity is to accelerate and implement scientific discoveries, technological advances, behavioral practices, and social norms so that century long lives are healthy and rewarding.

To further this mission, SCL has launched its New Map of Life™ initiative. In this initiative, researchers define new models for education and lifelong learning, redesign how we work, advise new policies for health care, housing, the environment and financial security, and promote more intergenerational partnerships. It will also advance a new narrative, which redefines what it means to be “old” and values people at different stages of life. Media outlets, advertisers and the entertainment industry will play an important role in this effort by sharing stories and creating new imagery and content about longevity and aging. Read more

Lessons From the Pandemic

Early in the pandemic, we launched the New Map of Life: After the Pandemic project, a collection of short observations about changes as they were occurring, from experts in academia, business, healthcare, the arts and elsewhere. Now, more than a year since COVID-19 erupted, we’ve had time to analyze and reflect about the most significant and lasting changes that have occurred, and about what’s most needed to ensure healthier, longer lives.

In this series of articles to be released over the coming weeks, we address each of these topics in depth, identifying the most pressing issues and seeking solutions.  Read more


A Life-Course Model for Healthier Aging

The vulnerabilities that an aging population face during COVID-19 highlight the urgency of re-structuring our society to accommodate this growing proportion of our global community.

In this commentary, published in the first issue of the Lancet Healthy Longevity, we urge societies to adopt principles from the New Map of Life in order to respond with resilience to the COVID-19 pandemic.  Read more


JEREMY BAILENSON is the Thomas More Storke Professor of Communication and is the founding director of the Virtual Human Interaction Lab. He is also a faculty affiliate of SCL. Bailenson studies the psychology of virtual and augmented reality, in particular how virtual experiences lead to changes in perceptions of self and others. His lab builds and studies systems that allow people to meet in virtual space, and explores the changes in the nature of social interaction. His most recent research focuses on how virtual experiences can transform education, environmental conservation, empathy, and health, and over the past several weeks, Bailenson’s research on fatigue related to video calls, or “Zoom fatigue” has been covered widely in the press.



The Stanford Center on Longevity has named Foris Labs the winner of the 2020-2021 Design Challenge competition. This team beat out 222 other entries from 37 countries over the course of the competition to win the $10,000 grand prize.
Read more

Mentally Sharp

Absent significant disease, aging is associated with an increase in knowledge and expertise, emotional stability and heightened motivation to engage in meaningful work. At the same time, the speed and efficiency of new learning typically declines with age, as does sensory functioning affecting hearing and vision. Such changes can hamper the effectiveness with which people engage with work, families and communities.

SCL aims to develop and evaluate infrastructures that channel the strengths of older people into families, workplaces, and communities. This includes improving cutting-edge technologies that compensate for deficits in hearing, vision and balance. We work to understand and improve how older people make important decisions about health care and financial matters. We also pursue efforts to distinguish normal from disease-related aging in cognition, so that interventions and policies are targeted appropriately.

Center Team

Marie Conley Smith
Jialu Streeter, PhD

New Map of Life

Education: Ilana Horwitz, PhD, Fellow | Ari Kelman, PhD, Faculty Advisor
Intergenerational Relationships: Sasha Shen Johfre, Fellow | Jeremy Freese, PhD, Faculty Advisor
Early Childhood Influences: Jonas Miller, PhD, Fellow | Ian Gotlib, PhD & Paul Wise, PhD, Faculty Advisors

Featured Research


The Emergence of Life-Long Learning
Chip Conley is a bestselling author, entrepreneur and the founder of Joie de Vivre Hospitality, the second largest boutique hotel brand in America. He currently serves as Airbnb’s Strategic Advisor for Hospitality and Leadership, and is a member of SCL’s Advisory Council.

In 2018, he founded Modern Elder Academy (MEA), the world’s first “midlife wisdom school,” where attendees learn how to repurpose a lifetime of experience for the modern workplace. MEA’s beachfront campus is located in Baja California Sur, Mexico.

He recently co-authored a white paper with Ingo Rauth, an adjunct professor for Management and Design at IE Business School (Spain), titled “The Emergence of Long Life Learning“, which is intended to be a conversation starter and “a starting point for educators, policymakers, and entrepreneurs who seek to develop programs and schools that help us live a life that is as deep and meaningful as it is long.”

news? Read more


Online Education Has Exacerbated Inequalities


Physically Fit

Mobility is strongly associated with quality of life – the ability to move about independently at home and at work, to move about our community, to travel to distant places. Embedded in the concept of mobility is physical fitness across the life course, which is central to the notion of healthy aging.

Maintaining physical fitness is a major focus of SCL’s work, including projects on exercise, reducing sedentary behavior, optimal nutrition, and measurement of fitness through wearable devices.

We continue to work closely with the Stanford Lifestyle Medicine Center.

Center Team

Ken Smith
Marie Conley Smith

New Map of Life

Healthcare & Technology: Andrea Jonas, MD, Fellow | Nirav Shah, MD, Faculty Advisor
Fitness & Lifestyle: Megan Roche, MD, Fellow | Michael Fredericson, MD, Faculty Advisor
Built Environment: Diego Sierra Huertas, Fellow | Rob Jackson, PhD, Faculty Advisor
Environment: Chenghao Wang, PhD, Fellow | Rob Jackson, PhD, Faculty Advisor

Featured Research


Sightlines Project Research Update on Sleep
In a world full of opportunities, stressors, inequalities, and distractions, maintaining a healthy lifestyle can be challenging, and sleep is often the first habit to suffer. Good sleep hygiene is a huge commitment: it takes up about a third of the day, every day, and works best when kept on a consistent schedule. It does not help that the primary short-term symptoms of insufficient sleep can be self-medicated away with caffeine. However, the effects of sleep loss can range from inconvenient to downright dangerous; people have trouble learning and being productive, take risks more readily, and are more likely to get into accidents. These effects also last longer than it takes to get them, as recovering from each night of poor sleep takes multiple days. When it comes to sleep, every night counts. In this update, we will discuss what Stanford researchers have to say about sleep and why we need it, who is getting too little of it, and some of the latest findings that may help us sleep better. Read more


The Role of Residential Housing Segregation in the Burden of COVID19


Financially Secure

In an age of unprecedented longevity, a focus on lifelong individual financial security has never been more crucial. The mission of the Financial Security Division is to bring a unique interdisciplinary perspective to financial security issues facing our society by rethinking the perceived problems around an aging population, especially retirement planning and the need to work longer. By understanding the role that research, education and policy can play in solving these issues and by looking at the problems from multiple perspectives, we will drive the dialogue forward in order to facilitate a healthier state of long-term financial security for the individual and society.

Center Team

Martha Deevy
Jialu Streeter, PhD
Steve Vernon, FSA

New Map of Life

Financial Security: Matteo Leombroni, PhD, Fellow | Gopi Shah Goda, PhD, Faculty Advisor
Work: Alice Milivinti, PhD, Fellow | David Rehkopf, PhD, Faculty Advisor

Featured Research


Thinking Ahead: Informing the Design of a Roadmap for Keeping Your Money Safe as You Age
Preparing for changes in financial decision-making capacity is essential for a secure retirement. Unfortunately, the majority of Americans are underprepared for periods of diminished decision-making capacity as they age.

To inform how we might encourage older adults to plan for the future, a multi-disciplinary team of researchers worked together to understand the barriers to and facilitators of advance financial care planning. This research will inform the development of a toolkit and website that will be ready in the first half of 2021. These resources will be very useful for individuals, financial planners, financial institutions, and non-profit and community groups that serve seniors and their families.

The research team – Naomi Karp and Steve Vernon, Consulting Research Scholars at the Stanford Center on Longevity, and Dr. Marti DeLiema, Assistant Professor at the University of Minnesota—recently published their research findings on the website of the Society of Actuaries.

Read the report


COVID-19 Will Affect the Careers of Today's Youth