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CEPAR researchers to create the most up-to-date occupational life tables of urban employees in China

Han Li and Katja Hanewald

Two researchers at the ARC Centre of Excellence in Population Ageing Research (CEPAR) have been awarded over AUD 30,000 (USD 24,441) by the Society of Actuaries (SOA) to conduct research on occupation-specific life tables in China.

CEPAR’s Senior Research Fellow Dr Katja Hanewald, Associate Investigator Dr Han Li and collaborator Assistant Professor Dr Pu Liao of Central University of Finance and Economics in Beijing, China, have been granted funds in the China Research Scheme of the SOA.

The team’s project, titled “Constructing Occupation-Specific Life Tables in China“, will compute the most up-to-date occupational life tables for male and female urban employees in China.

China is one of the most rapidly ageing countries in the world. Life expectancy in China has been continuously increasing over the past half-century. This leads to substantial financial burdens for the Chinese social security system.

Life tables have been frequently used to determine the premium of life insurance products, to monitor population health and to access the effectiveness of social security policies. In China, various types of life tables have been developed in the last few decades based on different data sources and population samples.

“However, decomposed life tables are needed to accurately assess the level of longevity improvements across different population subgroups,” said Dr Katja Hanewald.

“Occupation is a good indicator of an individual’s socioeconomic and health status,” she said.

“Our research will provide a more detailed and complete picture of how longevity and health have improved in China,” said Dr Han Li.

“The decomposed life tables by occupation could inform the design of pension and healthcare policies as well as the development of the Enterprise Annuity industry and long-term care insurance market in China,” she said.

The new project follows the team’s work on recently completed research projects on health and mortality modelling for China, which were funded by CEPAR and its Australia-China Population Ageing Research Hub. CEPAR’s Australia-China Population Ageing Research Hub undertakes extensive research into the pension, social security and health implications of population ageing in China.

For general information on life tables, and in particular in Australia, read CEPAR’s latest fact sheet on Australian Life Tables: 150 years in the making.