PWL2020 – 1st International PEROSH Conference on Prolonging Working Life

Update 23th March 2020: Due to the COVID-19 situation we are currently investigating the possibility for an online-conference (same dates as below). Therefore do not book any hotel and flight at this moment.

Due to demographic changes across Europe, sometimes referred to as the ‘ageing society’, there is a strong political drive to maintain the labour force by prolonging working life, for example through increasing the retirement age. However, individual retirement intentions and the timing of retirement is an outcome of complex and dynamic processes that may not be in line with the intentions of political reforms.

The PEROSH project ‘Prolonging Working Life’ was initiated in 2018, and aims to determine push and stay factors regarding labour market participation of elderly workers across different European countries. Considering different regulations and cultures, the project wants to support and improve initiatives for preserving elderly workers at the labour market across Europe.

As part of the project an international conference for the PEROSH institutions and close collaborators will be held 25-26th May 2020 at the National Research Centre for the Working Environment in Copenhagen, Denmark. The aim of this conference is to share knowledge and stimulate networking within the PEROSH institutions about the topic of prolonging working life.

Date: 25-26th May 2020

Location: National Research Centre for the Working Environment – Lersø Parkalle 105 | DK-2100, Denmark.

Cost: Participation including lunch and coffee/tee is free. Transport and hotel is not included.

Registration (open until May 15th. 2020) – please use this link:

Abstract submission (deadline is now closed): Participants are encouraged to submit an abstract with their own research to be presented at the conference (about 10 min + 5 min discussion). The Abstract Form (download) should be filled in and emailed to

Topics for the conference:

  • Physical/ergonomic work demands
  • Psychosocial work factors
  • Senior policies at the workplace
  • Country specific labor market policies on age (early retirement, unemployment)
  • Practical implementation of good senior practice at workplaces
  • Age discrimination
  • New technologies, digitalization
  • Individual factors and skills
  • Possibilities for changing “track” (other work tasks, change of job type)
  • Health surveillance systems at workplaces
  • Positive factors (wellbeing, inspiring work, good social climate etc)


Day 1: May 25th 2020

11:30-12:30 Registration & Lunch (Sandwich)

12:30-12:45 Opening by the hosting institution

12:45-13:15 Keynote by Prof. Lars L Andersen

13:15-14:45 Short presentations (10 min + 5 min questions)

14:45-15:00 Break with coffee/tea

15:00-16:00 Networking and Discussion

16:00-16:30 Keynote by Prof. Emeritus Reidar J. Mykletun

16:30-18:00 Short presentations (10 min + 5 min questions)

Day 2: May 26th 2020

9:00-9:30 Keynote by Dr. Swenne G. van den Heuvel

9:30-10:00 Networking and Discussion

10:00-11:30 Short presentations (10 min + 5 min questions)

11:30-12:30 Lunch buffet at NFA cantina

12:30-13:00 Keynote by Dr. Svetlana Solovieva

13:00-14:30 Short presentations (10 min + 5 min questions)

14:30-15:00 Break with coffee/tea

15:00-15:30 Keynote by Dr. Sergio Lavicoli

15:30-16:30 Networking and Discussion

16:30-16:45 Thank you and goodbye


Lars L. Andersen is professor at the National Research Centre for the Working Environment in Copenhagen, Denmark. His research focuses on healthy senior working life, musculoskeletal disorders, and physical and psychosocial work environment. The keynote will present Danish studies in relation to prolonging working life based on cohorts combined with high-quality registers on labor market participation, and present new results from the #SeniorWorkingLife study ( – investigating Push, Stay, Jump, Pull and Stuck factors among older workers. The study is open for international collaboration.

Reidar J. Mykletun is professor emeritus at Stavanger Business School, University of Stavanger Norway. His 30 years of research experiences covers motivation for extended work life careers, retirement decisions, health and retirement, spouses’ effects on retirement, age discrimination, bullying of older workers at the workplace, and how leadership and organizational efforts may extend work life careers. His latest work on ageing workers and retirement has been in cooperation with NOVA at Oslo Met using NORlag data, and intervention research with Centre for Senior Policy (SSP), Oslo. The keynote will be based on Norwegian studies in relation to retirement decisions, age discrimination, and organizational efforts may extend work life careers.

Swenne G. van den Heuvel is a Senior Researcher at the Netherlands Organisation for Applied Research (TNO), the Netherlands. Her work experience includes national and international projects in the field of occupational health, in particular longitudinal studies on work-related musculoskeletal symptoms and psychosocial work characteristics. Her current research activities focus on the sustainable employability of ageing workers, but also of the younger generation based on the perspective that sustainable employability starts already early in life. She is the project manager of STREAM and CODI, both Dutch longitudinal studies aimed at sustainable employability. The keynote will present the TNO activities in the field of prolonging working life. In particular, the presentation will go into technological innovations and what it means for working life of older workers.

Sergio Lavicoli is Director of the Department of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Epidemiology and Hygiene of the Italian Workers’ Compensation Authority (INAIL) – World Health Organization Collaborating Centre (WHO CC). His research activity has been focusing on Work-related Stress and Psychosocial risk factors, innovative technologies, demographic changes with special reference to ageing of the workforce, occupational cancer, foresight of research priorities and strategies, cost effectiveness of OSH interventions and OSH policies. He is author of more than 850 publications including almost 200 in journals with impact factor. The keynote will focus on age management in the workplace, looking at the impact of technological innovation on the changing world of work and analysing how health surveillance programmes can better contribute to prolong working life.

Svetlana Solovieva is senior researcher at the Finnish Institute of Occupational Health. The keynote will focus on Working Life Expectancy based on questionnaire and register studies from the Nordic countries. Despite of an increased life expectancy and better health status, the average time people spend in gainful employment is relatively short as compared to life expectancy. Poor health, chronic diseases, and lifestyle factors were found to be associated with withdrawal from the labour force due to accidental death, disability, early retirement, and unemployment, especially among workers aged 50 years and older. Well-being of people aged 50 years and older depends on their involvement in social life, especially on their ability to play a role in the labour market. Working life expectancy (WLE) and healthy working life expectancy (HWLE) are indicator for evaluating the health of the working age population. WLE is equal to the time that a person at a given age is expected to spend at work or being economically active. This measure is similar to life expectancy but with exit from the workforce as the final state instead of death (therefore focused on the workforce). HWLE corresponds to the estimated average time (years) a person is expected to be healthy and working. HWLE can be used to estimate how many working years a person loses because of ill-health. Both WLE and HWLE can be seen as composite measures of longevity, health status and productive engagement in social life of ageing population and thus they can be used to assess successful ageing. Overview of the concepts, methods for estimation of WLE and HWLE, as well as research findings will be presented, and directions of future research will be discussed.

Scientific Committee:
The PEROSH ‘Prolonging Working Life’ group:

Local Organizing Committee:
Annette Meng, Emil Sundstrup, Kirsten Jürgensen, Lars Andersen