Computation Error Explains Census Bureau's Incorrect Estimate of Mortality Rate

Researchers Leonid A. Gavrilov and Natalia S. Gavrilova of the National Opinion Research Center (NORC) at the University of Chicago found that a computation error was to blame for the U.S. Census Bureau's incorrect prediction six years ago that "that there would be 114,000 centenarians in the country by 2010 when the actual number turned out to be half that at 53,364." The researchers' work "contradict[s] a long-held belief that the mortality rate of Americans flattens out after age 80."

Instead, it appears that "Gompertz Law, named for Benjamin Gompertz, who observed in 1825 that a person's risk of death in a given year doubles every eight years of age...holds at least through age 106, and probably higher, but the researchers said mortality data for those older than 106 is unreliable."
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1 comment :

  1. Greetings,

    You can meet the authors of this study, listen their lecture, ask your own questions and participate in discussions this Tuesday, March 13, in Chicago.
    Shorter weblink:

    What: Lecture by Gavrilov & Gavrilova "Mortality at Advanced Ages" (session A4) with subsequent Discussion
    When: Tuesday, March 13, 2012, 1:45 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
    Where: Chicago, Illinois (Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois, 300 East Randolph Street), room Train 3

    Logistic details:

    For those who are interested, the meeting will be followed by informal discussion, which will become increasingly informal by 5:15 p.m. (cocktail reception) and even more so later by 5:45 p.m. (dinner).

    Hope to see you at this meeting!

    If you can not come to Chicago at this time, and would like to have a similar event at your organization, feel free to contact the authors at: