About LIFECON

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The aims of the LIFECON project are to

  • understand how demographic changes are present at different phases of the life course
  • understand the implications of demographic changes for the macroeconomy and public finances to find ways in which to increase the sustainability of the welfare state
  • provide decision-makers and experts with information on the causes, consequences and solutions related to the changing structures of the Finnish population

Background

The key demographic challenges relate to population ageing and subsequent sustainability problems for the welfare state in many counties including Finland. A reduced fertility rate leads to lower future labour supply and tax revenues. The sustainability of the welfare state is partly dependent on the extent to which working lives can be prolonged and the need for health and old-age services reduced or postponed.

In addition to public finances, the challenges and their solutions broadly concern sociodemographic factors, health, the labour market, and the macroeconomy, thereby having a strong effect on the welfare of citizens.

Structure

The project consists of interconnected work packages (WP 1-5, see the figure below). Wellbeing, including individual, societal and intergenerational wellbeing, is an important cross-cutting theme in the WPs. Other cross-cutting themes include age, gender, socioeconomic factors, migration, regionality, health, the interplay between micro-, meso- and macro-level factors, as well as intra- and intergenerational connectedness.

Timetable

10/2021 – 9/2027

Consortium partners

Finnish institute of occupational health, Etla economic research, University of Helsinki

Stakeholders

Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment, Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Social Affairs and Health, Ministry of Education and Culture, Finnish Centre for Pensions, Finance Finland, Social Insurance Institute of Finland, Tela ry, Finnish National Agency for Education, National Audit Office of Finland, Finnish Institute of Health and Welfare, MIELI Mental Health Finland, Confederation of Finnish Industries, The Central Organisation of Finnish Trade Unions

Steering group

Heikki Räisänen (Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment)

Mikko Spolander (Ministry of Finance)

Kimmo Tarvainen (Ministry of Social Affairs and Health)
Kristiina Mukala (Ministry of Social Affairs and Health), until 10/2022

Susan Kuivalainen (Finnish Centre for pensions)

Hennamari Mikkola (Social insurance institution of Finland)

Mikko Kuusela (Finance Finland)

Salla Toppinen-Tanner (Finnish Institution of Occupational Health)

Scientific advisory group

Mauricio Avendano, Associate Professor, Department of Epidemiology and Health Systems, Unisanté, Faculty of Biology and Medicine, University of Lausanne, Switzerland

Lisa Berkman, Director of the Harvard Center for Population and Development Studies, Professor of Public Policy and of Epidemiology, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, US

Kristiina Huttunen, Associate Professor, Department of Economics, Aalto University, Finland

Nico Keilman, Professor Emeritus, Department of Economics, University of Oslo, Norway

Henrik Kolstad, Professor, Department of Occupational Medicine, Aarhus University Hospital, Denmark

Ronald Lee, Professor Emeritus of Economics and Professor Emeritus of Demography, Department of Demography, University of California, Berkeley, USA

Alyson van Raalte, Research Group Leader, Lifespan Inequalities, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Germany

Financer

The Strategic Research Council, DEMOGRAPHY programme

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