Our story

We are developing the story that our report will tell. We have been through many iterations and will welcome comments.

The problem

Defining the problem we are responding to is not straight-forward. We have outlined our attempts.

Philosophical and social background

The way that we think about death and dying now has evolved from millennia of thinking and behaving.

Economics of death and dying

How much spent at the end of life and is the money well spent?

Human aspects of death and dying

There seems to be a tremendous pressure to stay alive. Where does it come from? Doctors find it difficult to talk to people about dying, it’s often easier to simply keep on treating. Can doctors diagnose dying reliably? Increasingly death occurs in old age. Is death in old age different from death at younger ages? How extensive is the burden of grief? Do health system have a role in grief? What about the spiritual aspects of death? Does faith help with dying?

Taming death

Death is terrifying and people and cultures have made many attempts – not least religion – to try and ‘tame’ death. The modern world has new ways.

Community responses

How do traditional communities manage death and dying and how are people in various places trying to develop a new community response to death and dying?

Research topics

What new do we need to know about death and dying?


Various readings to inform our discussions