Research and Publications

The Power and Purpose of Informal Community Leaders

In 2017, when Encore and researchers from the Stanford Graduate School of Education were beginning the Pathways to Encore Purpose project, Anne Colby, a psychologist at the Stanford University Graduate School of Education who has studied purpose across the life cycle, interviewed Hanmin Liu, co-founder of Wildflowers Institute, who made connections to informal elder leaders from three diverse Bay Area communities. “The Power and Purpose of Informal Community Leaders,” tells the stories of these community leaders and illustrates how each exemplifies purpose beyond the self, reveals the joy they gain from this work for the common good, and shows how the commitments of individuals can help create shared collective purpose in their communities.

MAKING THE CASE FOR INTERGENERATIONAL CHILDCARE: How Adults 50+ Can Support Home-Based and Family Childcare Centers

This paper will examine the meaningful roles that adults 50+ can play to help improve the quality of childcare for young children 0-5. It will show that intergenerational approaches to child care have the potential to create brighter futures for currently underserved youth; benefit older adults seeking purpose, income and connection; and unlock doors to economic prosperity for small business owners (mostly low-income women of color) currently running home-based and family childcare centers.


To better understand how Encore Fellows deliver impact in the organizations in which they serve (usually 1000 hours over a one-year period in stipended roles to improve organizational capacity, Jacquelyn James, Co-director of the Center on Aging & Work at Boston College, interviewed fellows, executive directors and other key staff at three organizations across the U.S. that worked on issues advancing the needs of children and youth. The study highlights commonalities among these three organizations in how both
fellows and the nonprofit leadership approached the fellowship, with exceptional impact for the organizations and fellows alike.

The Encore Talent Impact Project: A Study of Encore Talent at Work

In 2015 and six study partners surveyed nonprofit organizations that had used people in encore roles and asked about the kinds of impact they had observed and the personal characteristics of the individuals that might have contributed to that impact. The results – from volunteers to stipended roles, people in encores deliver unexpected types of impact across the board.

Building Momentum for Encore Careers

Research trendlines since 2008 show broad appeal, rising interest and diminishing worries about the coming decades among people in midlife, according to national research by and Penn...

Innovations in Encore

The essential resource for those interested in harnessing the energy, experience and talent of millions of people in their “encore” stage of life. Read how the encore movement started, and get tips...