Demographic Analysis

demographicsThe mission of the Demographics Program is to provide analytical support to the Center’s three divisions and initiate collaborative research and public discourse on the challenges of global and regional population aging. The research and analysis, directed by Senior Research Scholar Adele Hayutin, is designed to facilitate greater understanding of how the demographic changes currently underway affect all aspects of our lives. The Program targets a primary audience of public policy makers, business leaders, and other community leaders to enable them to better navigate the future, avoid negative consequences of demographic changes, and take advantage of opportunities to improve our well-being.

2013-14 PROJECTS

State of LongevityThe Center is developing a set of indicators and a composite index that measure how well the United States is doing to improve the prospects for long life; more specifically, the indicators will measure how the U.S. is doing on key actionable variables that can make a difference in improving the prospects for long-term well-being. The key indicators will range from child health to educational attainment and retirement preparedness. In January 2014, with funding from the New Retirement Forum, we hosted a meeting of experts at the Center to launch the project. Since then, we have continued our discussion of key indicators with faculty and other advisors and are seeking funding for the project. We envision an ongoing project, with a full report every five years and special annual issues in the intervening years. Adele Hayutin is leading the project.

spatialThis project uses Geographic Information Systems to investigate and communicate the spatial interrelationships of older populations, housing, health, and social support. The project team, including Adele Hayutin and Jonathan Streeter from the Center and Yana Kucheva from the Stanford Center on Poverty and Inequality, is seeking to understand the degree to which older people live in areas with high concentrations of old people. Since the project’s initial report in January 2014, the team has completed further statistical analysis of demographic data on the geography of aging. We are continuing to segment the older population by age bracket and we are investigating differences across states. The statistics show that high concentrations of elderly can only be detected in small geographic areas, and from our literature survey, we know that little work has been done at the neighborhood level. We are also addressing questions about NORCs, Naturally Occurring Retirement Communities, to estimate the number of old people who actually live in “elderly-dense” neighborhoods.

The project has been supported with a seed grant from the MacArthur Research Network on an Aging Society and will be completed in December 2014. The final report will include further statistical analyses as well as exploration of the applicability of U.S. Census Bureau online mapping tools for use by local planning agencies and policy makers as well as by business executives seeking to understand the market for services to an older population.

realitiesThe goal of this project is to develop a comprehensive briefing on the financial characteristics and challenges of older Americans. We are particularly interested in understanding age-related differences in income sources, spending patterns, and net worth. The report, being completed by Adele Hayutin and Jonathan Streeter, analyzes key challenges to the financial well-being of our aging population and synthesizes key data and analysis into a single reference document. The resulting compendium of charts and analysis will be a companion piece to our 2010 report “New Realities of an Older America,” and our 2013 report, “The Aging U.S. Workforce.”