Laboratory

Demographic Data

At a Glance Projects Publications Team

Project

Human Mortality Database

Conducted by Vladimir M. Shkolnikov, Dmitri A. Jdanov; Domantas Jasilionis, László Németh, Pavel Grigoriev, Inna Danilova; in Collaboration with Magali Barbieri (University of California, Berkeley, USA and French National Institute for Demographic Studies, Paris, France), Carl Boe, Denys Dukhovnov , Gabriel Borges , Felipe Menares , Lisa Yang, Ethan Roubenoff (all: University of California, Berkeley, USA)

Detailed Description

The Human Mortality Database (HMD, https://www.mortality.org) provides detailed mortality and population data for developed countries. It is a collaborative project sponsored by the MPIDR and the University of California, Berkeley. The main goal of the HMD project is to document trends and patterns in longevity and survival and to facilitate research on their components and determinants. At present, the database contains continuous detailed data series (on deaths, populations, death rates by age, year of birth, and calendar year; period and cohort life tables) and the original raw data from which the final data are derived for a total number of 41 countries or areas and 9 subpopulations. The longest series is for Sweden (since 1751), the shortest for South Korea (since 2003). We plan to add several more countries and to include data on causes of death for selected countries. However, by design the database is limited to populations for whom the vital statistics and census data are almost complete. All data series are updated on a rolling basis.

The main advantages of the HMD data are the high quality and comparability across time and space. Each continuous data series has met rigorous quality requirements. The set of uniform methods used includes validated techniques for the evaluation of data quality and for the harmonization of data series.

During the last few years, the HMD has overcome two new challenges: quality problems in the official population estimates of developed countries and extending the unique HMD approach to the largest developing countries.

The first challenge is related to the difficulties that statistical agencies are facing in producing reliable information on migration and to the problems many countries are encountering in generating population estimates at old ages.

The second challenge is related to the need for reliable data-driven mortality estimates for developing countries. Numerous existing indirect mortality estimates rely on strong modeling assumptions and do not always accurately reflect real patterns, they ignore country-specific conditions, and they provide only minimal information about the original input data. The extrapolation of the HMD country-specific approach has considerable potential for providing better mortality estimates.

There are several subnational versions of the HMD, i.e., satellite projects on regional data for specific countries. Four of these projects have already been launched:

  • The Canadian HMD (http://www.bdlc.umontreal.ca/CHMD/) at the University of Montreal.
  • The Japanese Mortality Database (http://www.ipss.go.jp/p-toukei/JMD/index-en.asp) at the National Institute of Population and Social Security Research.
  • The Australian HMD (https://demography.cass.anu.edu.au/research/australian-human-mortality-database) at the Australian National University.
  • The USMDB (usa.mortality.org) at the University of California, Berkley.

All of these projects were supported by the HMD team und use the standard HMD methodology. Nevertheless, there are serious doubts about whether the standard methodology is applicable to regions. The HMD team is currently working on this problem. In 2021, the MPIDR will launch the German Human Mortality Database.
 
The HMD is among the most cited and widely used demographic data resources. It has more than 50,000 registered users and has been cited in more than 5,000 scientific publications (see a non-exhaustive list at https://www.mortality.org/Public/HMD-Publist.pdf).
 
The Fifth HMD Symposium was held in Berlin on May 1315, 2019. Information about all HMD events is available on the HMD website (https://www.mortality.org/Public/Events.php).

Research Keywords:

Aging, Mortality and Longevity, Data and Surveys, Historical Demography

Region keywords:

World

Publications

van Raalte, A. A.; Klüsener, S.; Oksuzyan, A.; Grigoriev, P.:
International Journal of Epidemiology 49:2, 486–496. (2020)    
Jasilionis, D.; Jdanov, D. A.:
International Journal of Epidemiology 48:5, 1601–1603. (2019)
Jdanov, D. A.; Jasilionis, D.; Shkolnikov, V. M.; Barbieri, M.:
In: Encyclopedia of gerontology and population aging, 1–8. Cham: Springer International Publishing. (2019)
Klüsener, S.; Grigoriev, P.; Scholz, R. D.; Jdanov, D. A.:
Comparative Population Studies 43, 31–64. (2018)    
Németh, L.; Missov, T. I.:
PLoS One 13:6, e0198485–e0198485. (2018)    
Schneider, D. C.:
MPIDR Technical Report TR-2017-001. (2017)
Scholz, R. D.:
In: Datenreport 2016: ein Sozialbericht für die Bundesrepublik Deutschland, 28–34. Bonn: Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung. (2016)
Shkolnikov, V. M.; Jdanov, D. A.:
MPIDR Technical Report TR-2016-001. (2016)
Agorastakis, M.; Jdanov, D. A.; Grigoriev, P.:
Human Mortality Database: background and documentation, Berkeley; Rostock. (2015)
Barbieri, M.; Wilmoth, J. R.; Shkolnikov, V. M.; Glei, D. A.; Jasilionis, D.; Jdanov, D. A.; Boe, C.; Riffe, T.; Grigoriev, P.; Winant, C.:
International Journal of Epidemiology 44:5, 1549–1556. (2015)
Penina, O.; Jdanov, D. A.; Grigoriev, P.:
MPIDR Working Paper WP-2015-011. (2015)    
Shkolnikov, V. M.; Jdanov, D. A.; Andreev, E. M.; Vaupel, J. W.:
Advances in Gerontology 27:2, 229–235. (2014)
Shkolnikov, V. M.:
Demografische Forschung Aus Erster Hand 9:3, 1–2. (2012)
Andreev, E. M.:
MPIDR Technical Report TR-2010-004. (2010)
Jdanov, D. A.; Glei, D. A.; Jasilionis, D.:
Genus 66:1, 17–36. (2010)
Jasilionis, D.; Andreev, E. M.; Shkolnikov, V. M.:
In: Proceedings of the International Conference on Social and Demographic Costs of Transition, Agveran (Armenia), October 1-4, 2008., 157–166. Yerevan, Armenia: Armenian State University of Economics. (2008)
Scholz, R. D.; Jdanov, D. A.:
Demografische Forschung Aus Erster Hand 5:1, 4–4. (2008)
Shkolnikov, V. M.; Jdanov, D. A.:
In: Demographic challenges for the 21st century: a state of the art in demography; conference organized as a tribute to the continuing endeavours of Prof. Dr. Em. Ron Lesthaeghe in the field of demography, 211–220. Brussels: VUBPRESS. (2008)
Grigoriev, P.:
Human Mortality Database: background and documentation, Human Mortality Database (http://www.mortality.org/). (2007)
Jasilionis, D.:
Human Mortality Database: background and documentation, Human Mortality Database (http://www.mortality.org/). (2007)
Jasilionis, D.:
Human Mortality Database: background and documentation, Human Mortality Database (http://www.mortality.org/). (2007)
Mészáros, J.; Jasilionis, D.:
Human Mortality Database: background and documentation, Human Mortality Database (http://www.mortality.org/). (2007)
Scholz, R. D.:
Human Mortality Database: background and documentation, Human Mortality Database (http://www.mortality.org/). (2007)
Scholz, R. D.; Jdanov, D. A.:
MPIDR Working Paper WP-2007-002. (2007)    
Jasilionis, D.:
In: Living longer but healthier lives: how to achieve health gains in the elderly in the European Union? Proceedings of the XXVI Europe Blanche meeting, Budapest (Hungary), 25-26 November, 2005, 111–121. Paris: Institut des Sciences de la Santé. (2006)
Jasilionis, D.:
Human Mortality Database: background and documentation, Human Mortality Database (http://www.mortality.org/). (2006)
Pyrozhkov, S.; Foygt, N.; Jdanov, D. A.:
Human Mortality Database: background and documentation, Human Mortality Database (http://www.mortality.org/). (2006)
Rychtáríkova, J.; Jasilionis, D.:
Human Mortality Database: background and documentation, Human Mortality Database (http://www.mortality.org/). (2006)
Shkolnikov, V. M.; Jdanov, D. A.:
Human Mortality Database: background and documentation, Human Mortality Database (http://www.mortality.org/). (2006)
Jasilionis, D.; Scholz, R. D.; Jdanov, D. A.:
Human Mortality Database: background and documentation , http://www.mortality.org/. (2005)
Jdanov, D. A.; Andreev, E. M.; Jasilionis, D.; Shkolnikov, V. M.:
Demographic Research 13:16, 389–414. (2005)
Jdanov, D. A.; Scholz, R. D.; Shkolnikov, V. M.:
Demographic Research 13:14, 335–362. (2005)
Philipov, D.; Jdanov, D. A.; Jasilionis, D.:
Human Mortality Database: background and documentation , Internet. (2005)
Scholz, R. D.; Jdanov, D. A.:
Human Mortality Database: background and documentation, Human Mortality Database (http://www.mortality.org/). (2005)
Scholz, R. D.; Jdanov, D. A.:
Human Mortality Database: background and documentation, Human Mortality Database (http://www.mortality.org/). (2005)
Scholz, R. D.; Jdanov, D. A.:
Human Mortality Database: background and documentation, Human Mortality Database (http://www.mortality.org/). (2005)
Shkolnikov, V. M.; Wilmoth, J. R.; Glei, D. A.:
Demographic Research 13:10, 223–230. (2005)
Wilmoth, J. R.; Andreev, K. F.; Jdanov, D. A.; Glei, D. A.:
Human Mortality Database (http://www.mortality.org/). (2005)
Jasilionis, D.:
Human Mortality Database: background and documentation, Human Mortality Database (http://www.mortality.org/). (2004)
Jasilionis, D.; Stankūnienė, V.:
Human Mortality Database: background and documentation , Human Mortality Database (http://www.mortality.org/). (2004)
Philipov, D.; Jasilionis, D.:
Human Mortality Database: background and documentation, Human Mortality Database (http://www.mortality.org/). (2004)
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.