Life-style of the elderly in Austria

Date of publication: June 15, 1989

Company: GfK


Partial results of a comprehensive life-style study are presented here. The subsample of 50-to-75-year olds (n=1.500) was subjected to a cluster analysis with the help of 28 variables. Two of the five resulting clusters characteristically corresponded to the traditional stereotypes of old age (helpless, modest, withdrawn, passive, etc.); 3 clusters, however, showed different combinations of characteristics, which could best be described as "successful/firmly established," "active"," and "intellectual" senior citizen types, respectively, these groups resemble younger population groups and/or partially even show more pronounced preferences. The availability of consumer time has a favourable effect. The group of "active senior citizens" which does not correspond to the traditional stereotype of old age any more will grow as a result of increased spending power during retirement, of extensive education, and of a heightened transfer of interests from active professional life to "retirement." It is not merely the quantitative growth of the older population groups, but above all the predictable structural changes (wealth, education, acquired skills, health conscious- ness, etc.) that cause this target group to become increasingly interesting with regard to what is being offered (culture, leisure time, housing, etc.). At least for the near future, more phenomena of reactance are to be expected in connection with advertising.

Rudolf Bretschneider


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