Quotation Dury, Sarah, Willems, Jurgen, Nico, De Witte, De Donder, Lisbeth, Buffel, Tine, Vertee, Dominique. 2016. Municipality and Neighborhood Influences on Volunteering in Later Life. Journal of Applied Gerontology. 35 (6), 601-626.




This article explores the relationships between municipality features and volunteering by older adults. In the literature, strong evidence exists of the influence of place on older people’s health. However, the question how neighborhoods and municipalities promote or hinder volunteer participation remains under-explored. Data for the research are derived from the Belgian Aging Studies. We estimate logistic multilevel models for older individuals’ engagement in volunteering across 141 municipalities in Belgium (N = 67,144). Analysis shows that neighborhood connectedness, neighborhood satisfaction, home ownership, and presence of services predict voluntary engagement at older ages. The findings support that perceptions and quality of social resources that relate to neighborhoods may be important factors to explain volunteering among older adults. Moreover, the findings suggest that volunteering in later life must be considered within a broader framework.


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  • volunteering
  • Municipality
  • aging
  • Multilevel

Publication's profile

Status of publication Published
Affiliation External
Type of publication Journal article
Journal Journal of Applied Gerontology
Citation Index SSCI
Language English
Title Municipality and Neighborhood Influences on Volunteering in Later Life
Volume 35
Number 6
Year 2016
Page from 601
Page to 626
Reviewed? Y
URL https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24861461
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0733464814533818
Open Access N


Willems, Jurgen (Details)
Buffel, Tine (Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Belgium)
De Donder, Lisbeth (Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Belgium)
Dury, Sarah (Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Belgium)
Nico, De Witte (University College Ghent, Belgium)
Vertee, Dominique (Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Belgium)
Research areas (ÖSTAT Classification 'Statistik Austria')
3914 Gerontology (Details)
5421 Aging research (Details)
6906 Public research (Details)
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