Paola Scommegna is a senior writer in U.S. Programs and has held a variety of communications positions at PRB since 2011. Her focus is on communicating academic research on U.S. health, well-being, and aging in nontechnical language for policymakers and program planners. She has previously worked at the University of Wisconsin–Madison, Bread for the World, and PRB. She has also served as an independent consultant for a variety of research and social change organizations, including the U.S. Census Bureau, Firelight Foundation, and Amizade. Scommegna holds an master’s degree in global education from American University and a Bachelor of Science in journalism from Northwestern University.
Older Women Live Longer, But With More Disability and Financial Challenges Than Men
Older women in the United States continue to live longer than men, on average, but they’re spending an increasing share of their later years living with a disability, research suggests. “Women may be living longer but not healthier lives than men,” says Eileen Crimmins of the University of Southern …
Why Are They Asking That? What Everyone Needs to Know About 2020 Census Questions
By law, the U.S. government is required to count the number of people living in the United States every 10 years. Getting an accurate count is important because census numbers impact daily life in the United States in many ways. For example, census data are often used to determine how much federal f…
It’s Nature and Nurture: How Our Genes and Our Friends Shape the Way We Live Our Lives
Scientists have long debated the importance of nature versus nurture—genes versus the environment—in shaping the choices people make and the paths their lives take. Two decades of research make it increasingly clear that both nature and nurture always play a role—that is, the extent to which genetic…
Infographic: U.S. Aging and Dementia Trends
The share of older Americans with dementia is decreasing, but the total number will rise as the large baby boomer population ages and more people live longer. While education gives older adults an edge, reducing their dementia risk, racial and socioeconomic disparities in dementia are large.
Family Instability Linked to Behavior Problems in Kindergarten
Children who enter kindergarten after experiencing repeated household changes are more likely to display problem behaviors that inhibit learning and disrupt classrooms. Such changes include residential moves and shifts in family composition and household routines.
Is Working Longer Good for Older Americans’ Health?
Part Two of Three excerpted from Today’s Research on Aging No. 37: Health and Working Past Traditional Retirement Ages Working at older ages appears to keep people mentally sharp, physically active, and socially connected, according to some research. But other studies suggest that retirement may red…