Pathways from childhood economic conditions to adult mortality in a 1953 Stockholm cohort: the intermediate role of personal attributes and socioeconomic career

Gurzo, K., Modin, B., Martikainen, P., Östergren, O.
International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 19:12, 7279 (2022)
Open Access


Although both childhood and adult economic conditions have been found to be associated with mortality, independently or in combination with each other, less is known about the role of intermediate factors between these two life stages. This study explores the pathways between childhood economic conditions and adult mortality by taking personal attributes as well as adult socioeconomic career into consideration. Further, we investigate the role of intergenerational income mobility for adult mortality. We used data from a prospective cohort study of individuals that were born in 1953 and residing in Stockholm, Sweden, in 1963 who were followed for mortality between 2002 and 2021 (n = 11,325). We fit Cox proportional hazards models to assess the association of parental income, cognitive ability, social skills, educational attainment, occupational status, and adult income with mortality. The income mobility is operationalized as the interaction between parental and adult income. Our results show that the association between parental income and adult mortality is modest and largely operates through cognitive ability and adult educational attainment. However, our results do not provide support for there being an effect of intergenerational income mobility on adult mortality. In a Swedish cohort who grew up in a comparatively egalitarian society during the 1950s and 1960s, childhood economic conditions were found to play a distinct but relatively small role for later mortality.

Das Max-Planck-Institut für demografische Forschung (MPIDR) in Rostock ist eines der international führenden Zentren für Bevölkerungswissenschaft. Es gehört zur Max-Planck-Gesellschaft, einer der weltweit renommiertesten Forschungsgemeinschaften.