TOY Research

The TOY Approach is underpinned by ongoing research and development.

In 2013, the multi-disciplinary team of researchers involved in the original EU funded TOY Project compiled a review of the literature on intergenerational learning involving young children and older people. The next phase of the research was the documentation of 21 case studies of intergenerational practice in seven countries based on interviews and observations.

Taking on board lessons learnt in the first two phases of the research, 13 TOY Pilot Actions involving young children and older people in Italy, Spain, the Netherlands, Poland and Poland were established in 2014.  The Pilot Actions were documented and evaluated and are presented in video, photographs and quotations from the participants (visit the TOY in Action page for more insights).

Finally, at the end of the TOY Project we collected individual testimonies, which captured the change that came about to individuals and to organisations as a result of the TOY Project (read the TOY stories here).

In 2016, a peer-reviewed article about the TOY approach and how intergenerational learning can influence cultural transformation processes in our diverse society has been published by the Czech journal ‘Studia Paedagogica’ (Vol 21, No2, 2016).

In October 2016, a TOY Position Paper was published and presented during the Lifelong Learning Awards Ceremony in Brussels, when the TOY Project was awarded as one of the three most innovative, creative and inclusive European initiatives in the field of lifelong learning.

Download our publications below.



TOY Position Paper

Young children and the elderly together: a powerful combination for a good city. We are living in a time when European cities are more culturally diverse than ever before.

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Peer-reviewed article

This academic peer-reviewed article on IGL and cultural transmission has been published on the Czech Journal ‘Studia Paedagogica’ Vol 21, No2 (2016).

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Literature Review

A literature review on intergenerational learning involving young children and older people.

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Research Summary

A colourful summary of the findings of the literature review available in 8 languages

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Casestudies of IG practice

A Guide to Community-based Intergenerational Initiatives in Europe

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