Social and Economic Dimensions of an Aging Population


Vol. 1 No. 4

Winter 1999/2000

SEDAP (Social and Economic Dimensions of an Aging Population) is a multidisciplinary research program studying a wide range of aging-related issues and is funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. SEDAP is centred at McMaster University and involves researchers from that institution as well as from the University of British Columbia, Université de Montréal, Queen's and the University of Toronto.

I. SEDAP Research Papers

SEDAP Research Papers are available on the SEDAP website ( at no cost. A paper copy may be obtained for a nominal charge. Please contact Mrs. Gail Kalika, Department of Economics, KTH-426, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ont., Canada, L8S 4M4.

SEDAP Research Paper No. 8:

Disability Related Sources of Income and Expenses: An Examination Among the Elderly in Canada

Parminder Raina (Health Care and Epidemiology, UBC), Steven Dukeshire (Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, McMaster), Margaret Denton (Gerontology, McMaster), Larry W. Chambers (Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, McMaster), Andria Scanlan (BC Research Institute for Children's and Women's Health, Vancouver, BC), Amiram Gafni (Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, McMaster), Susan French (Nursing, McMaster). Anju Joshi (Gerontology, McMaster), and Carolyn Rosenthal (Gerontology, McMaster)

In this paper, the authors use the 1986 and 1991 Health and Activity Limitation Survey (HALS) from Statistics Canada to examine disability in conjunction with income and other economic variables. HALS is a nationally representative sample of able and disabled persons, based on the Canadian census. From the 1986 and 1991 surveys, the authors study a subsample consisting of the non-institutionalized disabled, aged 55-64 and 65 and over.

Among the principal findings of the paper are:

II. Workshop on Retirement in Canada: Labour Supply and Saving Behaviour

On November 5, 1999 at McMaster University, SEDAP presented a workshop on some aspects of retirement in Canada. The workshop was sponsored by Finance Canada, Human Resources Development Canada and SSHRC, and involved 50 participants from academics, government and the private sector. The papers presented at the workshop are available on the SEDAP website (see Section I above for the website address).

III. SEDAP Post-doctoral Appointments

SEDAP is very pleased to announce the first appointments in its post-doctoral fellowship program. Steven Prus and Gordana Colby have recently taken up their appointments at McMaster University and will pursue joint research with other members of the SEDAP group in addition to extending their own research interests. We welcome them both.

Steven holds a B.A. in Sociology from McMaster, an M.A. in Sociology from the University of Western Ontario and will defend his Ph.D. dissertation at Simon Fraser University in January, 2000. His thesis is entitled "Changes in Economic Status and Inequality during Later Life: A Quantitative Analysis of Canadian Data". He will be working with other SEDAP researcher members in the Centre for Gerontological Studies on projects involving preparations for independence and financial security in later life and changing patterns of family support. Steven has just prepared a paper for publication entitled "The Determinants of Economic Well-Being in Later Life".

Gordana holds a B.Sc. in Health Sciences from the University of Waterloo, and B.A. and M.A. degrees in Economics from York University. Her doctoral thesis in Economics, entitled "Latent Multivariate Duration Models", has been submitted at York University and will be defended in June of this year. Gordana will be working with a number of researchers in the Department of Economics, and plans to pursue projects in the areas of health economics and retirement planning.

IV. Statistics Canada Research Data Centre at McMaster

Statistics Canada will establish a pilot Research Data Centre at McMaster. The Centre is expected to be in operation by mid-year, and will be designed to serve the needs of social science researchers at McMaster and neighbouring institutions. Among other things, it will serve as a test site for other centres that will eventually be located at a small number of other universities across the country.

The main purpose of such a centre will be to give researchers access to Statistics Canada master data files. There are obvious advantages for researchers associated with SEDAP as well as for others in having a centre in operation at an early date. For Statistics Canada there is the advantage of being able to test the physical and other arrangements in one centre before others are brought on stream. The new centre will be located in an area of Mills Library where provision can be made for the security that is an essential aspect of making Statistics Canada survey files available at university sites.

Initially the focus will be on longitudinal surveys, starting with the National Longitudinal Survey of Children and Youth, the National Population Health Survey, the Survey of Labour and Income Dynamics, the Workplace and Employee Survey, and the Longitudinal Youth in Transition Survey. Subsequently other survey files will become available at the McMaster site, depending on the interests of researchers.

editor: Deb Fretz -
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Last revised: Jan 20, 2000.