Volume 25 - Article 8 | Pages 285-310

Gender differences in social mortality differentials in Switzerland (1990-2005)

By Reto Schumacher, Sarah Vilpert

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Date received:21 Oct 2009
Date published:26 Jul 2011
Word count:7433
Keywords:differential mortality, education, gender, linked census data, marital status, Switzerland


Using data from the 1990 and 2000 Swiss Federal Censuses linked to the death records of the years 1990-1995 and 2000-2005, this paper investigates gender differences in mortality differentials by level of educational achievement and by marital status. In both periods, the differential by level of education is clearly more pronounced among men, but the difference in the educational gradient between men and women decreases between the two periods of observation. Health behavior might contribute to the gender difference in the educational mortality gradient, but it is probably not the main reason for this finding. The mortality differential by marital status is also stronger in men, but the difference between men and women narrows over time. Our analysis also shows that gender differences in the mortality differential by marital status almost disappear when gender differences in population composition by level of education, nationality, employment status, and housing situation are taken into account.

Author's Affiliation

Reto Schumacher - University of Geneva, Switzerland [Email]
Sarah Vilpert - Swiss Health Observatory, Switzerland [Email]

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