Forecasting and Ageing


Population ageing, usually defined as a shift of population age composition towards the older ages, is a consequence of lasting decreases in fertility and increases in life expectancy. The population size and its structure impact many parts of the socio-economic, environmental and political systems, thus a graying population is of particular public interest. WIC studies question conventional measures of aging and suggest considering rather physical and cognitive functioning or remaining life expectancy than relaying on chronological age only. Furthermore we investigate the challenges and opportunities from economical and societal perspectives to prepare for old-age societies. Topics such as explaining and projecting trajectories of physical and cognitive functioning as well as trends in public finances are on the WIC research agenda.







Key Concepts/Questions

  • Rethinking measures of aging on micro and macro level
  • Investigating population’s health over time and across countries
  • Exploring physical and cognitive functioning of older adults
  • Sustainability of public finances and current health care policies


The Wittgenstein Centre aspires to be a world leader in the advancement of demographic methods and their application to the analysis of human capital and population dynamics. It is a collaboration among the World Population Program of the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA), the Vienna Institute of Demography of the Austrian Academy of Sciences (VID/ÖAW) and the Demography Group and the Research Institute on Human Capital and Development of the Vienna University of Economics and Business (WU).

Wittgenstein Centre Partner: WU Wittgenstein Centre Partner: OEAW Wittgenstein Centre Partner: IIASA