Journal Article

Life expectancy versus lifespan inequality: a smudge or a clear relationship?

PLOS One, 12:9, e0185702 (2017)
Open Access


Interest in inequality, including lifespan inequality, is growing. Several studies, using various measures of variation in the length of life, reveal that as life expectancy increases, lifespan inequality tends to decrease, albeit with considerable variation across populations and over time. The aim of this article is to understand why the strength of the relationship between life expectancy and lifespan inequality varies across publications. Results differ in large part because they are based on different data sources. In addition, some measures show more smudginess than others. All the analyses presented here support the basic finding of a strong relationship between life expectancy and lifespan inequality.

Keywords: life expectancy
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.