Social inequalities in ageing. Copenhagen Life Course Epidemiology in Aging Research (CLEAR)
Our purpose is to study social inequalities in health and aging in a life course perspective, and to explore the pathways through and interactions with psychosocial, psychological and biological factors. We want to inform policy makers on intervention possibilities aiming at reducing social inequality in health among middle-aged and older adults.
To inform intervention strategies a better understanding of life course social determinants of aging as well as their interplay with psychological, behavioural and biological factors is of huge importance in today’s aging society. Knowledge about risk factors and development of interventions in the most vulnerable older citizens will add important new knowledge to this area.
It is increasingly recognized that the ageing process is shaped over the life course. Disadvantage in childhood, adolescence and early adulthood increases the risk of early onset of chronic disease, accelerated decline in physiological functions and loss of functional ability. Ageing can manifest as subclinical adverse levels of biological and physiological indicators, as well as onset of physical or cognitive decline or fatigue in daily activities.
We aim to investigate the influence of factors in childhood, adolescence, adulthood and cross generational (e.g. adverse socioeconomic position, social relations, psychosocial stressors and health problems) on ageing (e.g. levels of inflammatory markers, allostatic load, physical and cognitive function). Furthermore, we aim to investigate the association between midlife markers of aging on later life development of disability, disease and mortality. We additionally aim to map potential mediating pathways linking early life exposures with ageing outcomes.
Research is needed to understand the everyday life of old-age populations with or without disease or disability. Aging-related outcomes of interest include chronic conditions, physical and cognitive decline and disability, life expectancy with or without disability, and mortality.
Using cohort studies and registries, we investigate how socioeconomic and psychosocial factors (e.g. social relations, major life events, stress, work environment, lifestyle and retirement) affect health, function and longevity of older adults. We also study mechanisms through which these factors affect health.
In the CLEAR research group, we are leading a large research project with a focus including a natural experiment and the development of interventions among middle-aged and older people in a disadvantaged area. The project is collaborative across research groups at the Section of Social Medicine and the Department of Public Health (Section of Health Services Research).
“Health, Well-being and Social Relations in a Changing Neighbourhood: a longitudinal, multi-methods study of the consequences of large structural changes in a diverse social housing area” (In Danish: “Sundhed, Trivsel og Relationer i Taastrupgaard”, STRIT) is funded by the Nordea-fonden with 8.8 mio. DKK and initiated in January 2018. The aim of the study is to investigate changes in well-being, health and social relationships in a larger social housing community in Høje Taastrup municipality in the period 2018-2021. The community is undergoing large-scale (900 mill. DKK) changes over the coming years in both the build environment/housing, recreational areas, infrastructure and institutions.
A longitudinal design using a multi-methods approach will be used to analyse how large-scale structural changes (in combination with a social intervention) in a social housing area are experienced by the residents aged 45 + years (N~600), and how the changes are associated with health, well-being and social relations at the individual and aggregated level across time before, during and after the structural changes. Through register linkage, development in health related and social factors will be compared to a control area not undergoing structural changes (N~5,000). Qualitative interviews with residents representing the two largest ethnic groups together with a household baseline survey conducted in eight languages will serve as needs assessment for two interventions to be planned in a participatory process building on co-creation with the residents and local stakeholders representing municipal and non-governmental health and social care services.
In the developed countries life expectancy has increased annually by 2-3 months for more than 150 years. This is due to reduced mortality in different ages at different periods. Today, the survival improvement in older ages is the main contributor to the ever-increasing life expectancy.
We investigate changes in mortality patterns with focus on social disparity in lifespan. Furthermore, we study whether the gain in life expectancy is expected to be lived with or without functional limitations (physical, cognitive etc.) or other health conditions by estimating trends in health expectancy (disability-free life expectancy, disease-free life expectancy etc.) We will analyze gender and social inequalities in health expectancy using register data, SHARE and other surveys and linkage between registers and surveys.
- Copenhagen Aging and Midlife Biobank (CAMB)
- The Metropolit 1953 Cohort (in Danish only)
- The Danish Longitudinal Study on Work, Unemployment and Health (DALWUH)
- The Copenhagen Perinatal Cohort (CPC)
- The Danish Intervention Study on Preventive Home Visits
- The Danish Conscription Database (DCD)
- The 1914 Birth Cohort Copenhagen School Health Records Register (Reference: J. Baker et al. Cohort Profile: The Copenhagen School Health Records Register)
- The Danish Longitudinal Study of Ageing (DLSA)
- Survey of Health Ageing and Retirement in Europe (SHARE)
- Women’s Health Initiative
- The Level of Living Surveys (LNU)
- Swedish Panel Study of Living Conditions of the Oldest Old (SWEOLD)
- Danish National Registries
- Nordeafonden STRIT 8.8 mio DKK (STRIT)
- Nordeafonden Center for Sund Aldring 3 mio. DKK (CAMB2)
- Nordforsk (Social inequalities in Ageing)
- Beckettfonden 100.000 kr. (CAMB2)
- Ensomme gamles værn 300.000 kr. (STRIT)
- VELUX (CAMB)
|Brønnum-Hansen, Henrik||Associate Professor||+4535327974|
|Christensen, Ulla||Associate Professor||+4535327663|
|Jepsen, Eva||Project Coordinator||+4535327978|
|Jørgensen, Terese Sara Høj||Assistant Professor||+4535335886|
|Kalvåg, Cecilie Kivikoski||Student||+4535332751|
|Lund, Rikke||Professor, Head of Section||+4535327992|
|Molbo, Drude||Data Administrator||+4535326736|
|Nilsson, Charlotte Juul||Associate Professor||+4535327122|
|Nygaard, Siv||PhD Fellow||+4535332406|
|Pusat, Ilayda Dilara||Student||+4535337388|
|Sandholdt, Catharina Thiel||Postdoc||+4535326359|
|Skogstad, Sissel||Academic Research Staff||+4535330011|
|Srivarathan, Abirami||PhD Fellow||+4535334443|