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The Value of Museums in Meeting the Global Dementia Challenge

Researchers at the Institute of Cultural Capital (ICC) – led by Head of Research Kerry Wilson – with funding from LJMU Global Challenge Research 2018, are conducting a three-month pilot impact study that aims to create a substantive partnership between Liverpool John Moores University (LJMU), National Museums Liverpool (NML) and Museu Paulista of the University of São Paulo (MPUSP) that will generate innovative, impactful research on museum-led dementia care practices.

Dementia is a global challenge. In 2015, dementia affected 47 million people worldwide, a figure that is predicted to increase to 75 million in 2030 and 132 million by 2050. Dementia and Alzheimer’s disease, in England and Wales, are currently the leading cause of death for men and women aged 80 years and over. Projections for the Brazilian population point to an increase in the prevalence of dementia in the 65+ age group, which will mean 55,000 new cases a year between 2010 and 2020.

The high prevalence and adverse social and economic impacts of dementia for families, care-givers and communities affect both developed and developing countries and constitute a major public health challenge that requires consistent governmental actions, as declared by the World Health Organization (WHO) and Alzheimer’s Disease International.

The WHO Global Action Plan on the Public Health Response to Dementia (2017) prioritises dementia awareness, diagnosis, care strategies, and the need for a shared, research-based knowledge. Equipping health and social care professionals, as well as informal carers, with appropriate skills via cross-sector collaborations and interventions will be essential to address the WHO Global Action Plan and the United Nations Sustainability Goal of good health and wellbeing. Museums-led dementia awareness-training programmes have become a demonstrable asset in addressing this global challenge.

Using House of Memories as a case study, this project aims, equally, to share learning from the empirical research project Crossing Boundaries while exchanging innovative approaches and practices through mobility experiences, transnational meetings and online media engagement.

Further information on the The Value of Museums in Meeting the Global Dementia Challenge can be accessed from the link on right-hand side of this page, and for regular updates follow ICC on social media and the hashtag #GCRFMuseum.

For more information, please contact r.neivaganga@ljmu.ac.uk.

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