Innovation Theory Revisited: Self-Preservation Innovation versus Self-Reinvention Innovation in Later Life

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Abstract

The innovation theory of successful aging differentiates between Self-Preservation Innovation (SPI) and Self-Reinvention Innovation (SRI), suggesting that both contribute to well-being in later life. Based on a telephone survey of 545 retirees aged 60 and over, this study aimed at examining the two types of innovation in leisure and their association with well-being. Results indicated that SPI activities were significantly more common than SRI activities and that innovators who reported adding the former had significantly higher life satisfaction than the rest of the sample. No such difference was found regarding innovators who added SRI activities. Moreover, the study showed that it was not the type of innovation but rather its result—namely, a greater leisure repertoire among innovators—that predicted postretirement life satisfaction. Results are discussed regarding each tenet of the theory, elucidating directions of future research.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)389-401
Number of pages13
JournalLeisure Sciences
Volume38
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - 19 Oct 2016

Keywords

  • aging
  • continuity theory
  • innovation theory
  • leisure
  • well-being

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