The 50+generation, or the 50-64 age group, is the largest age group, amounting to one out of five people, among the population of Seoul, and is regarded to be the new driving force of growth for the future of the city. In the age of centenarians, the advent of a new life cycle for human beings leads to the need for policies to support people in preparing for the second half of their lives after turning 50 years old. Unlike the elderly aged over 65 of yesteryear, today’s 50+generation is the driving force to lead changes of Seoul as they are not simply the target of welfare policies but well-equipped with competence, willingness, and competitiveness.
Seoul is the first local government that paid attention to the significance of the 50+generation. The city announced the “Comprehensive Support Plan for 50+generation” to make the 50+generation the backbone generation of Seoul and has established a differentiated support system exclusively for the 50+generation. In April 2016, the city founded 50 Plus Foundation, a think tank and control tower to lead policies for the 50+generation and the center of networks. Seoul is also creating a foundation to establish 50 Plus Campuses and 50 Plus Centers to support programs in which the 50+generation can participate, spaces for activities, and community activities.
Seoul has plans to construct six 50 Plus Campuses, welfare and culture complex exclusively for the middle-aged, in different regions in Seoul and establish 50 Plus Centers in 19 autonomous districts to support the activities of the 50+generation in the local community, letting the target group use the 50+ facilities throughout Seoul. As of 2018, three 50 Plus Campuses are in operation (in the western, central, and southern parts of Seoul) and five 50 Plus Centers are actively in operation (in the downtown area, Dongjak, Yeongdeungpo, Nowon, and Seodaemun).
The 50 Plus Campus, under construction or in operation in each region, provides job redesigning education, job searching service, support for community activities, and more for the middle-aged. With a gross area of about 5,000m², it is comprised of a counseling office, seminar room, multipurpose hall, music room, auditorium, and shared offices and offers various contents such as tailored courses of education and comprehensive counseling services to help participants design their lives.
The 50+generation is expected to become the backbone of our society by turning into massive social capital with the aid of the “double-cropping policy for the 50+generation.” The policy will result in the expansion of infrastructure for the 50+generation in order to create an environment in which the 50+generation can exert their abilities and skills based on their experience and the pursuit of differentiated initiatives reflecting the traits of the 50+generation.