Volume 16 - Article 2 | Pages 27-58

A new perspective on population aging

By Warren C. Sanderson, Sergei Scherbov

Print this page  Send this article to a friend  Twitter

 

 
Date received:02 Aug 2006
Date published:16 Jan 2007
Word count:6765
Keywords:age/aging, historical demography, life expectancy, median age, population forecasting, prospective age
DOI:10.4054/DemRes.2007.16.2
 

Abstract

In Sanderson and Scherbov (2005) we introduced a new forward-looking definition of age and argued that its use, along with the traditional backward-looking concept of age, provides a more informative basis upon which to discuss population aging. Age is a measure of how many years a person has already lived. In contrast, our new approach to measuring age is concerned about the future.
In this paper, we first explore our new age measure in detail and show, using an analytic formulation, historical data, and forecasts, that it is, in most cases, insensitive to whether it is measured using period or cohort life tables. We, then, show, using new forward-looking definitions of median age and the old age dependency ratio, how combining the traditional age concept and our new one enhances our understanding of population aging.

Author's Affiliation

Warren C. Sanderson - State University of New York, Stony Brook, United States of America [Email]
Sergei Scherbov - International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis, Austria [Email]

Other articles by the same author/authors in Demographic Research

» Quantifying policy tradeoffs to support aging populations
Volume 30 - Article 20

» Very long range global population scenarios to 2300 and the implications of sustained low fertility
Volume 28 - Article 39

» Significance of life table estimates for small populations: Simulation-based study of estimation errors
Volume 24 - Article 22

» Projection of populations by level of educational attainment, age, and sex for 120 countries for 2005-2050
Volume 22 - Article 15

» Marriage in Russia: a reconstruction
Volume 10 - Article 2

» Period Fertility in Russia since 1930: an application of the Coale-Trussell fertility model
Volume 6 - Article 16

Most recent similar articles in Demographic Research

» Socioeconomic fertility differentials in a late transition setting: A micro-level analysis of the Saguenay region in Quebec
Volume 30 - Article 38    | Keywords: historical demography

» Occupation and fertility on the frontier: Evidence from the state of Utah
Volume 30 - Article 29    | Keywords: historical demography

» Integrating uncertainty in time series population forecasts: An illustration using a simple projection model
Volume 29 - Article 43    | Keywords: population forecasting

» Cause-specific measures of life years lost
Volume 29 - Article 41    | Keywords: life expectancy

» The age pattern of increases in mortality affected by HIV: Bayesian fit of the Heligman-Pollard Model to data from the Agincourt HDSS field site in rural northeast South Africa
Volume 29 - Article 39    | Keywords: life expectancy