How do the historical changes in life expectancy and longevity affect lifespan development? In this presentation, Alexandra M. Freund will argue that historical increases in life expectancy do not only impact on the later but also on the earlier parts of the life span. Increased life expectancy represents both a challenge and an opportunity for self-regulation and positive development. Assuming a compensatory relationship of social norms/expectations and self-regulation for development, the importance of the self-regulatory processes of setting, pursuing, and disengaging from personal goals in the life domains of social relations, familiy, work, and leisure changes across adulthood with the longer life course of the current generations.
Alexandra M. Freund is Professor of Psychology at the University of Zurich. She studied psychology at the University of Heidelberg and at the Free University in Berlin, were she was awarded her doctorate. She was post-doctoral fellow at Stanford University before returning to Germany to co-direct a project on successful aging and developmental regulation with Paul C. Baltes at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development in Berlin. Before being appointed as chair for Applied Psychology: Life Management at the University of Zurich in 2005, she was assistant and associate professor at Northwestern University in Evanston, Il. Her work focuses on motivation, on the processes of developmental regulation and on self-related cognitions and emotions across the life span and it has been published in many learned journals such as Psychology & Health; Human Development and Psychology and Aging.