The authors present, in the article, a critical approach about the
characteristics and dimensions of wicked problems and discuss the application of
this theoretical framework to the comprehension and action in a contemporary
major issue: active and healthy aging. Under this conception, active and healthy
aging promotion is conceived as a complex, uncertain and multidimensional
problem requiring innovative forms of thought and intervention, namely in local or
regional contexts. Innovative local ecosystems, engaging multiple stakeholders in a
quadruple helix perspective, are presented as an adequate way to intervene in
wicked problems’ response and particularly on the aging issues. At the end of the
article, the authors present an example of a regional innovation ecosystem, in
Portugal, associated with a global and synergic intervention in the domain of active
and healthy aging and reflect on the critical elements of model’s replication.
Keywords: Wicked problem, active aging, healthy aging, local ecosystem, innovation, replication.
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