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Unpublished Paper
Predicting Life Expectancy: A Cross-Country Empirical Analysis
  • AUDREY B. HENDRICKS, Boston University
  • PHILIP E GRAVES, University of Colorado at Boulder
Most economic research on life expectancy focuses on building forecasting models using mortality trends or constructing parameter life expectancy models with samples of individuals. We here provide a cross-sectional model of life expectancy, using a comprehensive worldwide sample, which analyses the impact of country level variables on average life expectancy. The model variants suggest robustly that proxies for technology, education, disposable income and healthcare all have a significant and positive effect on country variation in average life expectancy, at all income levels. A proxy for the health risks/epidemics factor is significantly negative. This analysis provides information of use to governments, particularly in the developing world, since average life expectancy is predicted with high explanatory power by variables that can be influenced through public policy. Indeed, it is seen that quite low-cost policy interventions can have dramatic impacts on life expectancy, in addition to other benefits of those interventions.
  • Health policy,
  • life expectancy,
  • AIDS,
  • cigarette damages,
  • development and health
Publication Date
Citation Information
AUDREY B. HENDRICKS and PHILIP E GRAVES. "Predicting Life Expectancy: A Cross-Country Empirical Analysis" (2009)
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