James Oeppen

M.A.

  • J.B. Winsløws Vej 9 B, st. tv.

    5000 Odense C

    Danmark

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Forecasting Mortality by Cause of Death

Forecasting mortality is a difficult problem that is undertaken by many international, government, and financial institutions. It would be useful to disaggregate these forecasts by cause of death because that would allow policy makers to identify target areas for future reductions in mortality. In addition, the ultimate cause of death may be a good guide to the period of ill health that precedes most deaths and help to indicate its cost to society. At the moment, very few institutions try to forecast mortality by cause of death because of the technical difficulties.  

One of the reasons it is more difficult is that even though the average age at death is generally rising, each person must die, so if the forecast suggests that a cause will become less important in the future, one or more of the other causes has to absorb extra deaths and not necessarily at the same age.

A second problem arises because we would like the sum of the forecasts for each cause to match the existing forecasts that do not separate the causes of death. This project undertakes basic research to explore new statistical methods that are explicitly designed to address these problems.

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