Volume 23 - Article 3 | Pages 63–72

Sensitivity of life disparity with respect to changes in mortality rates

By Peter Wagner

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Date received:10 Jan 2010
Date published:09 Jul 2010
Word count:3401
Keywords:life disparity, mortality analysis, sensitivity analysis, threshold age
Weblink:All publications in the ongoing Special Collection 8 "Formal Relationships" can be found at http://www.demographic-research.org/special/8/


This article is concerned with sensitivity analysis of life disparity with respect to changes in mortality rates. A relationship is derived that describes the effect on life disparity caused by a perturbation of the force of mortality. Recently Zhang and Vaupel introduced a "threshold age", before which averting deaths reduces disparity, while averting deaths after that age increases disparity. I provide a refinement to this result by characterizing the ages at which averting deaths has an extremal impact on life disparity. The results are illustrated using data for the female populations of Denmark in 1835, and for the United States in 2005.

Author's Affiliation

Peter Wagner - Max-Planck-Institut für Demografische Forschung, Germany [Email]

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