08 June 2017 - 11 June 2017
Kobe, Japan

East meets west: Innovation and discovery

World Population Program Deputy Director Sergei Scherbov will present latest IIASA research at the Third Asian Conference on Aging & Gerontology.

Senior couple exercising in the park ©Tom Wang/Shutterstock

Senior couple exercising in the park ©Tom Wang/Shutterstock

Under the conference theme “East Meets West: Innovation and Discovery”, the Third Asian Conference on Aging & Gerontology (AGen2017) aims to integrate results from different disciplines, fields, and
model systems, as well as innovative technological  
and experimental approaches, into groundbreaking  
new ideas that challenge existing paradigms  
regarding aging. Sergei Scherbov will present latest research from the Reassessing Ageing from a Population Perspective (Re-Ageing) project.

In his presentation, Scherbov will show how redefining old age based on changing characteristics of people provide a more accurate assessment of the challenges of population aging and the effects of policies to overcome them. For many years Scherbov together with Warren Sanderson have developed new measures of age and aging in demographic research. They suggest to broaden research methods to account for significant increases in life expectancy, as the focus on chronological age of people alone provides a limited picture of the process, one that is often not appropriate for either scientific study or policy analysis. Their groundbreaking results have been published in Nature and Science and other high level journals. Scherbov is also PI of the Re-Aging project at IIASA that, among other things, ascertains the extent to which advanced societies are actually aging in multiple dimensions, including health, cognitive abilities, and longevity.

The AGen2017 will be held between 08 – 11 June 2017 at the Art Center Kobe in Japan.

For more information please visit the event website.


Redefining Old Age

Saturday Session IV: 15:15-16:15
Stream: Aging and Gerontology

Most studies of population aging focus on only one characteristic of people: their chronological age. For example, the Old Age Dependency Ratio categorizes people as 'old' at age 65, regardless of whether they were living 50 years ago or likely to be living 50 years in the future. But 65-year-olds today generally have higher remaining life expectancies and are healthier than their counterparts in previous generations.
Age-specific characteristics vary over time and place. Focusing on only one aspect of the changes entailed in population aging but not on all the others provides a limited picture that is often not appropriate for scientific study or policy analysis.

The presentation is devoted to new ways of measuring aging that more accurately represent the real world. It will be shown that once more adequate measures of aging are used past aging looks very different and in countries with high life expectancy almost no aging was observed. Future aging trends look much less loomy when new indicators of aging are used compared to traditional approaches.

The recently developed characteristics approach for the study of population aging will be introduced and used in evaluating differences in aging across space and time. The main idea of the approach is the conversion of different characteristics that reflect people's physical, cognitive or health conditions to a single metric. The hallmark of the approach is the consistent use of changing characteristic schedules together with changing age structures, regardless of the exact way in which the two are combined.

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Last edited: 16 May 2017

Re-Aging Project

Policy Brief

Analyzing Population Aging from a New Perspective


Demographic Data Sheets

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