About the Author Vern L. Bengtson, PhD, is AARP/university professor of gerontology emeritus and research professor, Edward R. Roybal Institute on Aging, School of Social Work, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, California. A senior statesman in gerontology, Bengtson is a world-recognized expert on the sociology of the life course, family sociology, social psychology, ethnicity and aging. He has been elected as president of the Gerontological Society of America and has been granted two MERIT awards for research from the National Institutes of Health. He has written or edited 17 books and published more than 260 research papers. Early in his career, Bengtson started the Longitudinal Study of Generations, a multigeneration and multidisciplinary investigation of families, aging, and social change, which now is in its 45th year of data collection from more than 350 multigenerational families. He has received research awards from the Gerontological Society of America, the American Sociological Association, the American Psychological Association, the National Council on Family Relations, and the Society for the Scientific Study of Religion. As the lead editor on the two prior editions of the Handbook of Theories of Aging, and coeditor of the book that preceded them, Emergent Theories of Aging, Dr. Bengtson has led the charge to transform gerontology into a field that is rich in both data and theories. Richard A. Settersten, Jr., PhD, is Professor of Social and Behavioral Health Sciences, Oregon State University, where he is also Endowed Director of the Hallie E. Ford Center for Healthy Children and Families and a member of the Center for Healthy Aging Research. Dr. Settersten is Editor of numerous books and journal issues. His research spans multiple periods of the life course (especially early adulthood and late life) and multiple levels of analysis (from genomics to demography). A fellow of the Gerontological Society of America, Dr. Settersten has played leadership roles in the GSA as well as the American Sociological Association. His recent co-edited book (with J. Angel), the Handbook of Sociology of Aging, won the 2012 Outstanding Publication Award of the American Sociological Association?s Section on Aging and the Life Course. The MacArthur Foundation as well as multiple divisions of the National Institutes of Health have supported his research. He has also participated in activities of the National Academy of Science/National Research Council/Institute on Medicine panels on the health and wellbeing of young adults, and on new directions in social demography, social epidemiology, and sociology of aging. Read more
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