Closer To Better Understanding Of Worldwide Mortality Rates


A better understanding of worldwide mortality rates is on the cards thanks to a novel study by researchers from Queens University Management School (QUMS).

The Institute and Faculty of Actuaries has awarded researchers over £10,000 of funding to gain a better understanding of the dynamics of mortality, and to identify the factors driving the future of mortality rates worldwide.

Colin O’Hare, program director for Actuarial Science and Risk Management, and Dr Declan French, a lecturer in Finance at Queen’s, will investigate the relationships between improvements in the five main causes of death across a range of OECD countries.

Colin O’Hare said: “We know the spread of health behaviours and medical technologies throughout the world happens at varying rates and for various reasons. With this part of the research we aim to identify the leading nations in terms of improvements in specific cause of death mortality, and to identify for other countries the speed to adjustment in relation to the lead country for each cause of death. Finally, we will then be able to quantify the impact of mortality shocks in the leading country on the rest of the system.

“We are very pleased to have received this funding which recognizes the high quality research going on within actuarial science at Queens University Management School. This is the first time the actuarial profession have supported research in Queens University and it follows the development of a highly successful actuarial undergraduate degree, the first cohort of which graduated in July 2011.”

The study will firstly focus on linking mortality improvements across countries through a cointegration approach. It will then analyse international mortality data split by country, gender and cause of death across a range of OECD countries.

A second study will assess the exogenous factors driving mortality rates across OECD countries building an explanatory model of in order to improve forecasting.

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