Volume 13 - Article 14 | Pages 335–362  

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

By Dmitri Jdanov, Rembrandt D. Scholz, Vladimir Shkolnikov

This article is part of the Special Collection 4 "Human Mortality over Age, Time, Sex, and Place: The 1st HMD Symposium"

Abstract

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, www.mortality.org) 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.

Author's Affiliation

Other articles by the same author/authors in Demographic Research

Estimates of mortality and population changes in England and Wales over the two World Wars
Volume 13 - Article 16

Socio-economic determinants of divorce in Lithuania: Evidence from register-based census-linked data
Volume 33 - Article 30

Components and possible determinants of decrease in Russian mortality in 2004-2010
Volume 28 - Article 32

Changes in educational differentials in old-age mortality in Finland and Sweden between 1971-1975 and 1996-2000
Volume 26 - Article 19

Differential mortality by lifetime earnings in Germany
Volume 17 - Article 4

Introduction to the Special Collection “Human Mortality over Age, Time, Sex, and Place: The 1st HMD Symposium”
Volume 13 - Article 10

Geographical diversity of cause-of-death patterns and trends in Russia
Volume 12 - Article 13

A summary of Special Collection 2: Determinants of Diverging Trends in Mortality
Volume 10 - Article 12

Educational differentials in male mortality in Russia and northern Europe: A comparison of an epidemiological cohort from Moscow and St. Petersburg with the male populations of Helsinki and Oslo
Volume 10 - Article 1

Gini coefficient as a life table function: Computation from discrete data, decomposition of differences and empirical examples
Volume 8 - Article 11

Algorithm for decomposition of differences between aggregate demographic measures and its application to life expectancies, healthy life expectancies, parity-progression ratios and total fertility rates
Volume 7 - Article 14

Life expectancy in two Caucasian countries. How much due to overestimated population?
Volume 5 - Article 7

Progress in health care, progress in health?: Patterns of amenable mortality in Central and Eastern Europe before and after political transition
Special Collection 2 - Article 6

Russian mortality beyond vital statistics: Effects of social status and behaviours on deaths from circulatory disease and external causes - a case-control study of men aged 20-55 years in Urdmurtia, 1998-99
Special Collection 2 - Article 4

Introduction to the Special Collection of papers on "Determinants of diverging trends in mortality"
Special Collection 2 - Article 1

Most recent similar articles in Demographic Research

International completeness of death registration
Volume 50 - Article 38    | Keywords: data collection, death, mortality, statistics, sustainable development goals, vital registration

Ageing and diversity: Inequalities in longevity and health in low-mortality countries
Volume 50 - Article 12    | Keywords: aging, health, lifespan inequality, longevity, old-age threshold, regional differences, socioeconomic status

Frailty at death: An examination of multiple causes of death in four low mortality countries in 2017
Volume 49 - Article 2    | Keywords: aging, causes of mortality, mortality, multiple causes of death

World population aging as a function of period demographic conditions
Volume 48 - Article 13    | Keywords: aging, demographic transition, population

Migrating to a new country in late life: A review of the literature on international retirement migration
Volume 48 - Article 9    | Keywords: aging, internal migration, retirement, transnationalism