Children's educational attainment, occupation, and income and their parents' mortality

Popul Stud (Camb). 2018 Mar;72(1):53-73. doi: 10.1080/00324728.2017.1367413. Epub 2017 Oct 10.


Using data from Finland, this paper contributes to a small but growing body of research regarding adult children's education, occupation, and income and their parents' mortality at ages 50+ in 1970-2007. Higher levels of children's education are associated with 30-36 per cent lower parental mortality at ages 50-75, controlling for parents' education, occupation, and income. This association is fully mediated by children's occupation and income, except for cancer mortality. Having at least one child educated in healthcare is associated with 11-16 per cent lower all-cause mortality at ages 50-75, an association that is largely driven by mortality from cardiovascular diseases. Children's higher white-collar occupation and higher income is associated with 39-46 per cent lower mortality in the fully adjusted models. At ages 75+, these associations are much smaller overall and children's schooling remains more strongly associated with mortality than children's occupation or income.

Keywords: cause-specific mortality; children’s SES; educational attainment; income; occupation; parents’ mortality.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Academic Success*
  • Adult
  • Adult Children
  • Aged
  • Cause of Death
  • Child
  • Female
  • Finland
  • Humans
  • Income / statistics & numerical data*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Occupations / statistics & numerical data*
  • Parental Death / statistics & numerical data*
  • Parents
  • Social Class
  • Young Adult