Volume 38 - Article 20 | Pages 471–512
The increasing mortality advantage of the married: The role played by education
|Date received:||27 Mar 2017
|Date published:||02 Feb 2018
|Keywords:||education, marital status, marriage, mortality
|Additional files:||38-20_supplementary material (pdf file, 125 kB)
Background: In several European countries the excess mortality of nonmarried people relative to the married has increased. In this study we describe in detail the increasing mortality advantage of the married in Norway and investigate the extent to which changes in educational composition of marital-status groups can account for this increasing mortality gap.
Methods: Using register data for the entire population of Norway, we estimated discrete-time hazard models for mortality at age 50–89 in years 1975–2008. We also estimated one-year death probabilities by age, period, marital status, education, and spouse’s education. These were used to calculate period-specific age-standardized death probabilities for marital-status categories and hypothetical versions of these, assuming constant death probabilities in each educational group in each marital-status category or constant educational distributions. Hypothetical and observed versions were then compared.
Results: The mortality of nonmarried people relative to married people increased sharply over the years 1975–2008. During the first part of this period, mortality was constant or even increasing among the never-married, who at the end of the period could be considered as lagging 30 years behind the married. Educational patterns have changed markedly, but this explains only up to 5% of the increasing mortality disadvantage of the never-married. Educational changes have contributed more to the growing disadvantage of the widowed, while the picture is more mixed for the divorced.
Contribution: We demonstrate that there has been a large widening in the marital-status differences in mortality in Norway since the 1970s and that little of this difference can be attributed to changes in educational distributions.
Øystein Kravdal - Universitetet i Oslo, Norway
Emily Grundy - University of Essex, United Kingdom
Katherine Keenan - University of St Andrews, United Kingdom
Other articles by the same author/authors in Demographic Research
Are sibling models a suitable tool in analyses of how reproductive factors affect child mortality?
Volume 42 - Article 28
Taking birth year into account when analysing effects of maternal age on child health and other outcomes: The value of a multilevel-multiprocess model compared to a sibling model
Volume 40 - Article 43
Loneliness among Polish migrants in the Netherlands: The impact of presence and location of partners and offspring
Volume 37 - Article 23
Pathways from fertility history to later life health: Results from analyses of the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing
Volume 32 - Article 4
What has high fertility got to do with the low birth weight problem in Africa?
Volume 28 - Article 25
Further evidence of community education effects on fertility in sub-Saharan Africa
Volume 27 - Article 22
Children's stunting in sub-Saharan Africa: Is there an externality effect of high fertility?
Volume 25 - Article 18
Demographers’ interest in fertility trends and determinants in developed countries: Is it warranted?
Volume 22 - Article 22
Does income inequality really influence individual mortality?: Results from a ‘fixed-effects analysis’ where constant unobserved municipality characteristics are controlled
Volume 18 - Article 7
Effects of current education on second- and third-birth rates among Norwegian women and men born in 1964: Substantive interpretations and methodological issues
Volume 17 - Article 9
Does cancer affect the divorce rate?
Volume 16 - Article 15
A simulation-based assessment of the bias produced when using averages from small DHS clusters as contextual variables in multilevel models
Volume 15 - Article 1
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
The problematic estimation of "imitation effects" in multilevel models
Volume 9 - Article 2
The impact of individual and aggregate unemployment on fertility in Norway
Volume 6 - Article 10
Is the Previously Reported Increase in Second- and Higher-order Birth Rates in Norway and Sweden from the mid-1970s Real or a Result of Inadequate Estimation Methods?
Volume 6 - Article 9
The High Fertility of College Educated Women in Norway: An Artefact of the Separate Modelling of Each Parity Transition
Volume 5 - Article 6
A search for aggregate-level effects of education on fertility, using data from Zimbabwe
Volume 3 - Article 3
An Illustration of the Problems Caused by Incomplete Education Histories in Fertility Analyses
Special Collection 3 - Article 6
Most recent similar articles in Demographic Research
Differences in all-cause mortality: A comparison between immigrants and the host population in Norway 1990-2012
Volume 34 - Article 22 | Keywords: education, marital status, mortality
The growth of education differentials in marital dissolution in the United States
Volume 45 - Article 26 | Keywords: education, marriage
Educational heterogamy during the early phase of the educational expansion: Results from the university town of Tartu, Estonia in the late 19th century
Volume 43 - Article 13 | Keywords: education, marriage
Calloused hands, shorter life? Occupation and older-age survival in Mexico
Volume 42 - Article 32 | Keywords: education, mortality
Educational and age assortative mating in China: The importance of marriage order
Volume 41 - Article 3 | Keywords: education, marriage