October 06, 2015 | Defo News

Do we have a signpost to long life?

The current issue and all past issues can be found at www.demografische-forschung.org © MPIDR

The new issue (Nr. 3/2015) of "Demografische Forschung Aus Erster Hand", the popular science newsletter with latest research results from demography, has been released. (The Newsletter is available in German only.)

Topics of the 3/2015 issue:

1. Do we have a signpost to long life?
Life-expectancy inequalities of various population groups have increased.

Finns, Swedes, and Norwegians are at midlife when they hit around age 40. As is known, it depends on the person’s sex whether another 40 years or so will be added to that lifespan. Almost equally important is whether the person belongs to the so-called Vanguard group, i.e. people who are married and have a high education. These live on average 5 years longer than non-Vanguard members of the same sex.


2. Between striking panic and playing down
What actually happens when a country’s populations is aging and shrinking as never seen before?

From the outside, Germany is an interesting case study. In no other country was the birth rate so low for such a long time. But what does this mean for the people who live there? Martin Bujard of the Federal Institute for Population Research has compiled the results of numerous studies, classified them, and checked their probability. His conclusion: There is no reason to panic, but there are many reasons to worry.

3. Household, children, and career
Mothers in eastern and western Germany are still having different family models

Almost two-thirds of mothers born in East Germany around 1940 later had full-time jobs. This compares to a mere 16% for their female peers in West Germany. A new study conducted at the Chair of Family Demography of Rostock University has looked at how these differences came about and why some of them continue to exist.

"Demografische Forschung Aus Erster Hand" is a joint publication of the Max Planck Institute for demographic Research (MPIDR), the Rostocker Zentrum zur Erforschung des Demografischen Wandels (RZ), the Vienna Institute of Demography (VID), the Wittgenstein Centre for Demography and Global Human Capital and the Federal Institute for Population Research (BiB). The newsletter is released four times a year and is available electronically and as a printed version and is free of charge.

All past issues are available online on the Newsletter website. On the website you also have the possibility to subscribe to the Newsletter to get informed about the release of the new issues or to receive the printed versions by mail.


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The Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research (MPIDR) in Rostock is one of the leading demographic research centers in the world. It's part of the Max Planck Society, the internationally renowned German research society.