Longer lives and pension reforms open up the prospect of extending workers’ careers. If measures to improve working conditions throughout the whole course of working lives will be put in place by institutions and by companies, this perspective might prove to be enjoyable and help older people to stay active and to feel useful in the long. On this matter Italy has to face a delay but will benefit from the good practices already introduced in many European countries. Such practices are aimed at preserving the employability of workers, strengthening skills and valuing experience, improving work’s physical conditions and relieving work related stress, finding solutions for a good work-life balance and addressing the problem of long-term unemployment among workers over55. The author's conclusion is that a decisive step forward for the active-ageing agenda would be using the lever of working hours: hours reduction and part-time working, shorter and longer leaves and progressive retirement may allow workers to reach older age in good health, to take care for family members, to periodically update their skill set.
Keywords: Active ageing; labour-market policies; welfare; working conditions; age management; working hours.