Max Planck Research Group

Gender Gaps in Health and Survival

At a Glance Projects Publications Team

Research Area

Gender Differences in Health and Survival

Gender matters! The empirical evidence accumulated over many decades has revealed that “women get sicker, men die quicker”. Two X chromosomes, female sex hormones, greater immunocompetence in women, and unhealthy lifestyle behaviors in men have all been shown to play important roles in explaining gender gaps in survival. Socioeconomic advantages in men and traditionally masculine behaviors have been suggested to explain women’s greater morbidity. But is this so simple and static? In the past years, our research was concerned with the following overarching research questions:

How established is the male-female health-survival paradox across subjective and objective health measures and across nations with cultures, economies, and social systems very different from those in high-income countries? How consistent is the female survival advantage at times of crises, such as the onset of adverse health, stressful life circumstances, and famines and epidemics? What is the role of gender in shaping treatment-seeking and health reporting behaviors? How does the use of e-health differ by gender, and for which health problems is the use of e-health most common (and beneficial) among men and women?

Research Keywords:

Ageing, Mortality and Longevity, Data and Surveys, Health Care, Public Health, Medicine, and Epidemiology, Life Course

Region keywords:

China, Cuba, Denmark, Europe, Germany, India, Mexico, Russian Federation, USA

Projects of this Research Area

Gender Differences in Health and Mortality: Comparative Approach Project details
Gender Inequalities in Health and Survival: Role of Biology and Social Factors Project details
Gender, Hospitalization, and Mortality (Dissertation) Project details
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.