IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this article or follow this journal

Official population statistics and the Human Mortality Database estimates of populations aged 80+ in Germany and nine other European countries

  • Dmitri A. Jdanov

    (Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research)

  • Rembrandt D. Scholz

    (Rostocker Zentrum zur Erforschung des Demografischen Wandels)

  • Vladimir M. Shkolnikov

    (Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research)

Registered author(s):

    A systematic comparison of the Human Mortality Database and official estimates of populations aged 80+ is presented. We consider statistical series for East and West Germany and also for Denmark, England and Wales, France, Finland, Hungary, the Netherlands, Russia, Sweden, and Switzerland. The Human Mortality Database (HMD, methodology relies on the methods of extinct and almost extinct generations. HMD estimates are precise if the quality of death data is high and the migration among the elderly is negligible. The comparisons between the HMD and the official populations are not fully appropriate for the 1990s since the HMD calculations are related to official population estimates. A significant overestimation of the male population aged 80+ and especially 90+ between the censuses of 1970 and 1987 was found in West Germany. The relative surplus of men aged 90+ increased from 5 to 20 percent, which expressed in absolute numbers indicates an increase from 2 to 10 thousand. In 1971-1987 the official death rates have fallen dramatically to implausibly low values. In 1987-88 death rates based on the official populations suddenly jumped to the HMD death rates due to the census re-estimation. In the 1990s an accelerated decrease in male death rates has resumed. Among other countries, the relative and absolute deviations from the HMD estimates were especially high in Russia, Hungary, and England and Wales. Regression analysis reveals common factors of the relative deviation from the HMD populations. The deviation tends to decrease with time, increase with age, be higher during inter-census periods than in census years, and to decrease after the introduction of population registers.

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    Article provided by Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany in its journal Demographic Research.

    Volume (Year): 13 (2005)
    Issue (Month): 14 (November)
    Pages: 335-362

    in new window

    Handle: RePEc:dem:demres:v:13:y:2005:i:14
    Contact details of provider: Web page:

    References listed on IDEAS
    Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

    as in new window
    1. A. Roger Thatcher & Väinö Kannisto & Kirill F. Andreev, 2002. "The Survivor Ratio Method for Estimating Numbers at High Ages," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 6(1), pages 1-18, January.
    2. repec:cai:popine:popu_p2001_13n1_0156 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. A. R. Thatcher, 1999. "The long-term pattern of adult mortality and the highest attained age," Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series A, Royal Statistical Society, vol. 162(1), pages 5-43.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:dem:demres:v:13:y:2005:i:14. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Editorial Office)

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.