Special issue on:

Demographic Aspects of Human Wellbeing

(Vol. 19)

Guest editors: Sonja Spitzer, Vanessa Di Lego, Angela Greulich, Raya Muttarak

Managing editor: Maria Winkler-Dworak



Debate


EU and UK targets for healthy life expectancy –are they achievable?


Demography and well-being


WELLBYs, Cost-benefit analyses, and the Easterlin Discount


Research Articles

Going Beyond GDP with a Parsimonious Indicator: Inequality-Adjusted Healthy Lifetime Income

  • David E Bloom, Victoria Y Fan, Vadim Kufenko, Osondu Ogbuoji, Klaus Prettner, Gavin Yamey Mail
    Full text | Details

The Age U-shape in Europe: The Protective Role of Partnership


Well-being in Europe: Decompositions by country and gender for the population aged 50+


Details & Abstracts


Debate


EU and UK targets for healthy life expectancy – are they achievable?

Carol Jagger (corresponding author), Newcastle University, Population Health Sciences Institute, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK

Journal: Vienna Yearbook of Population Research
Volume: 19, 2021, pages (tbd - online-first)
Publisher: Verlag der Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften
doi:10.1553/populationyearbook2021.deb01

cite as:
Jagger, C. 2020. "EU and UK targets for healthy life expectancy – are they achievable?" Vienna Yearbook of Population Research 2021 (Volume 19): (tbd - online-first).

first online: 16.07.2020

Abstract:

In 2008, the EU Innovation Partnership on Active and Healthy Ageing (EIP-AHA) set a target of an increase of two healthy life years by 2020. More recently, in 2018, the UK Government set a target to “ensure people can enjoy at least 5 extra healthy, independent years of life by 2035, while narrowing the gap between the experience of the richest and poorest”. This paper reviews the progress the EU member states have made towards meeting this target, and what the UK can learn from their experiences. I conclude that, although the EU target is likely to be reached, the gap in healthy life years between the member states has increased. Past trends in and projections of disability-free life expectancy in England suggest that it will be difficult to achieve an increase of five healthy and independent years of life by 2035.
Keywords: health expectancy; life expectancy; healthy life years; social inequality; European Union

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Demography and well-being

Andrew E. Clark, Paris School of Economics - CNRS, Paris, France

Journal: Vienna Yearbook of Population Research
Volume: 19, 2021, pages (tbd - online-first)
Publisher: Verlag der Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften
doi:10.1553/populationyearbook2021.deb02

cite as:
Clark, A.E. 2021. "Demography and well-being" Vienna Yearbook of Population Research 2021 (Volume 19): (tbd - online-first).

first online: 21.01.2021

Abstract:

Demography studies the characteristics of populations. One such characteristic iswell-being: this was the subject of the 2019 Wittgenstein Conference. Here, I discusshow objective well-being domains can be summarised to produce an overall well-being score, and how taking self-reported (subjective) well-being into account mayhelp in this effort. But given that there is more than one type of subjective well-being score, we would want to know which one is “best”. We would also need todecide whose well-being counts, or counts more than that of others. Finally, I brieflymention the potential role of adaptation and social comparisons in the calculationof societal well-being.Keywords:subjective well-being; demography; measurement; policy

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WELLBYs, Cost-benefit analyses, and the Easterlin Discount

Paul Frijters, Department of Social Policy, London School of Economics. London, UK

Journal: Vienna Yearbook of Population Research
Volume: 19, 2021, pages (tbd - online-first)
Publisher: Verlag der Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften
doi:10.1553/populationyearbook2021.deb04

cite as:
Frijters, P. 2021. "WELLBYs, Cost-benefit analyses, and the Easterlin Discount" Vienna Yearbook of Population Research 2021 (Volume 19): (tbd - online-first).

first online: 09.03.2021

Abstract:

The current practise of cost-benefit analysis in Western countries consists of a collec-tion of various incompatible ideas and methodologies to obtain replicable numbersfor the costs and benefits of major public spending plans. This paper describesthe main elements of the dominant methodology, which combines consumer andproducer surplus, price-taking, government-inputs-as-outputs, hedonic pricing ofexternalities, and the issue-specific use of partial or general equilibrium thinking.The paper then discusses how that methodology can be augmented and partiallyreplaced by looking at how prospective policies would change the total number ofWELLBYs (life satisfaction-adjusted years of life) of the population. The abilityof the WELLBY methodology to address complex externalities is illustrated by theEasterlin Discount, which is a proposed reduction factor of 75% on all estimates ofprivate consumption benefits to offset the envy caused in others.Keywords:cost-effectiveness; wellbeing; consumer surplus; Easterlin Discount;public advocacy

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Research Articles


Going Beyond GDP with a Parsimonious Indicator: Inequality-Adjusted Healthy Lifetime Income

David E. Bloom, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA, USA
Victoria Y. Fan, University of Hawai’i at M ̄anoa, Office of Public Health Studies, Myron B. Thompson School ofSocial Work, Honolulu, HI, USA
Vadim Kufenko, University of Hohenheim, Stuttgart, Germany
Osondu Ogbuoji, Duke University, Duke Global Health Institute, Durham, NC, USA
Klaus Prettner (corresponding author), Vienna University of Economics and Business, Vienna, Austria, Vienna Institute of Demography (OeAW), Wittgenstein Centre for Demography and Global Human Capital
(IIASA, OeAW, University of Vienna), Vienna, Austria
Gavin Yamey, Duke University, Duke Global Health Institute, Durham, NC, USA

Journal: Vienna Yearbook of Population Research
Volume: 19, 2021, pages (tbd - online-first)
Publisher: Verlag der Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften
doi:10.1553/populationyearbook2021.res1.1

cite as:
Bloom, D. E.,  Fan V.Y., Kufenko, V., Ogbuoji, O., Prettner, K., Yamey, G. 2021. "Going Beyond GDP with a Parsimonious Indicator: Inequality-Adjusted Healthy Lifetime Income" Vienna Yearbook of Population Research 2021 (Volume 19): (tbd - online-first).

first online: 9.3.2021

Abstract:

Per capita GDP has limited use as a well-being indicator because it does not capture many dimensions that imply a “good life”, such as health and equality of opportunity. However, per capita GDP has the virtues of being easy to interpret and to calculate with manageable data requirements. Against this backdrop, there is a need for a measure of well-being that preserves the advantages of per capita GDP, but also includes health and equality. We propose a new parsimonious indicator to fill this gap, and calculate it for 149 countries. This new indicator could be particularly useful in complementing standard well-being indicators during theCOVID-19 pandemic. This is because (i) COVID-19 predominantly affects older adults beyond their prime working ages whose mortality and morbidity do not strongly affect GDP, and (ii) COVID-19 is known to have large effects on inequality in many countries.

Keywords:beyond GDP; well-being; health; inequality; human development;lifetime income; COVID-19

 

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The Age U-shape in Europe: The Protective Role of Partnership

Andrew E. Clark, Paris School of Economics – CNRS, Paris, France
Hippolyte d’Albis (corresponding author), Paris School of Economics – CNRS, Paris, France
Angela Greulich, Sciences Po – OSC, Paris, France

Journal: Vienna Yearbook of Population Research
Volume: 19, 2021, pages (tbd - online-first)
Publisher: Verlag der Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften
doi:10.1553/populationyearbook2021.res3.1

cite as:
Clark, A. E., d'Albis, H., Greulich, A. 2021. "The Age U-shape in Europe: The Protective Role of Partnership" Vienna Yearbook of Population Research 2021 (Volume 19): (tbd - online-first).

first online: 9.3.2021

Abstract:

In this study, we ask whether the U-shaped relationship between life satisfaction and age is flatter for individuals who are partnered. An analysis of cross-sectional EU-SILC data indicates that the decline in life satisfaction from the teens to the fifties is almost four times larger for non-partnered than for partnered individuals, whose life satisfaction essentially follows a slight downward trajectory with age. However, the same analysis applied to three panel datasets (BHPS, SOEP and HILDA) reveals a U-shape for both groups, albeit somewhat flatter for the partnered than for the non-partnered individuals. We suggest that the difference between the cross-sectional and the panel results reflects compositional effects: i.e., there is a significant shift of the relatively dissatisfied out of marriage in mid-life. These compositional effects tend to flatten the U-shape in age for the partnered individuals in the cross-sectional data.

Keywords: life satisfaction; life cycle; partnership; marriage

 

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Well-being in Europe: Decompositions by country and gender for the population aged 50+

Claudia Reiter, Department of Demography, University of Vienna, Wittgenstein Centre for Demography and GlobalHuman Capital (IIASA, OeAW, University of Vienna), Vienna, Austria
Sonja Spitzer (corresponding author), Department of Demography, University of Vienna, Wittgenstein Centre for Demography and GlobalHuman Capital (IIASA, OeAW, University of Vienna), Vienna, Austria
The authors are listed in alphabetical order with equal contributions.

Journal: Vienna Yearbook of Population Research
Volume: 19, 2021, pages (tbd - online-first)
Publisher: Verlag der Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften
doi:10.1553/populationyearbook2021.res4.1

cite as:
Reiter, C., Spitzer, S. 2021. "Well-being in Europe: Decompositions by country and gender for the population aged 50+" Vienna Yearbook of Population Research 2021 (Volume 19): (tbd - online-first).

first online: 9.3.2021

Abstract:

The well-being of older Europeans is of increasing importance given the substantial ageing of the population. This paper comprehensively analyses well-being for the population aged 50+in 26 European countries, using the newly proposed indicator “Years of Good Life” (YoGL), which measures the remaining years of life that an individual can expect to live in a “good” state. The indicator enables the decomposition of well-being into various dimensions, there by revealing important heterogeneities between regions and genders. Results show that numbers of YoGL at age 50 vary considerably between European countries. They are highest in Northern and Western European countries and lowest in Central and Eastern European countries, where many “good” years are lost due to low life satisfaction. Interestingly, the high life expectancy levels in Southern Europe do not translate into higher numbers of YoGL, mainly due to the low levels of physical and cognitive health in this region. While women and men can expect to have similar numbers of YoGL, women are likely to spend a smaller proportion of their longer remaining lifetime in a good state. These results demonstrate the importance of using well-being indicators that consider population heterogeneity when measuring humanwell-being, especially for older populations.

Keywords: well-being; population 50+; Europe; SHARE data; Sullivan’s method,cross-country analysis

 

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