## Abstract

Will the population of today's high-income countries continue to age throughout

the remainder of the century? We answer this question by combining two

methodologies, Bayesian hierarchical probabilistic population forecasting and the

use of prospective ages, which are chronological ages adjusted for changes in life

expectancy. We distinguish two variants of measures of aging: those that depend

on fixed chronological ages and those that use prospective ages. Conventional

measures do not, for example, distinguish between 65-year-olds in 2000 and 65-

year-olds in 2100. In making forecasts of population aging over long periods of time,

ignoring changes in the characteristics of people can lead to misleading results. It is

preferable to use measures based on prospective ages in which expected changes

in life expectancy are taken into account. We present probabilistic forecasts of

population aging that use conventional and prospective measures for high-income

countries as a group. The probabilistic forecasts based on conventional measures

of aging show that the probability that aging will continue throughout the century

is essentially one. In contrast, the probabilistic forecasts based on prospective

measures of population aging show that population aging will almost certainly

come to end well before the end of the century. Using prospective measures of

population aging, we show that aging in high-income countries is likely a transitory

phenomenon.

the remainder of the century? We answer this question by combining two

methodologies, Bayesian hierarchical probabilistic population forecasting and the

use of prospective ages, which are chronological ages adjusted for changes in life

expectancy. We distinguish two variants of measures of aging: those that depend

on fixed chronological ages and those that use prospective ages. Conventional

measures do not, for example, distinguish between 65-year-olds in 2000 and 65-

year-olds in 2100. In making forecasts of population aging over long periods of time,

ignoring changes in the characteristics of people can lead to misleading results. It is

preferable to use measures based on prospective ages in which expected changes

in life expectancy are taken into account. We present probabilistic forecasts of

population aging that use conventional and prospective measures for high-income

countries as a group. The probabilistic forecasts based on conventional measures

of aging show that the probability that aging will continue throughout the century

is essentially one. In contrast, the probabilistic forecasts based on prospective

measures of population aging show that population aging will almost certainly

come to end well before the end of the century. Using prospective measures of

population aging, we show that aging in high-income countries is likely a transitory

phenomenon.

Original language | English |
---|---|

Pages (from-to) | 1-13 |

Journal | Vienna Yearbook of Population Research |

Volume | 16 |

Publication status | Published - 2018 |

Externally published | Yes |