New Perspectives of Research on Aging: Linking SHARE with Administrative Data and Biomarkers | Munich Center for the Economics of Aging - MEA


01.07.2009 - 31.12.2011 / SHARE

New Perspectives of Research on Aging: Linking SHARE with Administrative Data and Biomarkers

The project, funded by the Volkswagen Foundation within the scope of its call for proposals on "Individual and Societal Perspectives of Aging", utilizes the existing data infrastructure supplied by the Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe (SHARE). Its goal is to create a database for interdisciplinary research on aging in Germany by way of the following two subprojects: (1) Linking SHARE survey data with administrative process data of the German Statutory Pension Insurance Scheme (SHARE-RV) The third wave data collected for the German SHARE project and the official process data of the German Statutory Pension Insurance Scheme were linked up via the social insurance numbers already recorded in the German subsample of SHARE. The linking of these data, along with any data cleansing work, was done at the Munich Center for the Economics of Aging. This preliminary study was due to be published at the end of 2011. In the fourth wave of SHARE data collection, the data linkage was repeated as numerous respondents had been added to a refresher sample. This subproject's extension in the fourth wave is funded by the Old-Age Security Research Network (Forschungsnetzwerk Alterssicherung). The correlation of respondents’ current subjective circumstances and life histories with the objective information processed by the Statutory Pension Scheme is to render a full picture of occupational biographies and life courses of older and very old citizens in Germany. This complex dataset is analyzed both under methodological aspects and with a view to a variety of subject-specific issues, for example transition to retirement and old-age security. (2) Survey of innovative biomarkers Alongside the biomarkers already incorporated in the standard questionnaire (grip strength and lung power), the German sub-investigation of the fourth SHARE wave, serving as a pilot study for SHARE as a whole, set out to survey additional innovative biomarkers, measured by well-trained interviewers. These new biomarkers include waist-to-height ratio, three blood pressure readings, and so-called dried blood spots for the measurement of three indicators (HbA1c, cholesterol, and c-reactive protein); they allow an objective assessment of health status unbiased by respondents’ personal perceptions. The project started off with the need to identify suppliers of materials for the measurement of the biomarkers; these materials were then tested. A suitable manufacturer of test sets for dried blood spots was located in the United States. As the interviewers of the German survey institutes were not familiar with the measurement of micro-invasive biomarkers and lacked the basic medical skills needed to that end, their intensive training was indispensable. Thus, one SHARE staff member attended an interviewer training course offered under the Health and Retirement Study (HRS) in the United States. The know-how acquired there flowed into the concept for interviewer training in Germany. A pretest interview with about 100 respondents took place in summer 2010. Based on its results, the interview materials were revised and optimized. The main survey was launched in spring 2011 and completed in late fall of the same year. The combination of survey data from different waves with administrative process data from German Statutory Pension Insurance and objectively measured biomarkers permits an extensive, interdisciplinary view of the complex interdependencies between the biological-medical and socio-economic dimensions of aging (both individual and societal). The following cooperation partners participate in the project: - Prof. Dr. Hermann Brenner (German Cancer Research Association (DKFZ), Heidelberg, Div. of Clinical Epidemiology and Aging Research) - Tatjana Mika (Research Data Center, Statutory Pension Insurance, Berlin) - Prof. Dr. Karsten Hank (Chair for Sociology at the Faculty of Management, Economics and Social Sciences, University of Cologne) - Prof. Dr. Hendrik Jürges (Chair for Health Economics and Management at Schumpeter School of Business and Economics, University of Wuppertal) - Prof. Steffen Reinhold, Ph.D. (Junior Professor for Empirical Economics, University of Mannheim) - Mathis Schröder, Ph.D. (German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin), Data Collection and Survey Statistics of the German Socio-Economic Panel Study (SOEP))

Dr. Barbara Schaan



Forschungsnetzwerk Alterssicherung

Dr. Barbara Schaan
Collection of Biomarkers and Linkage of Administrative Data in the “Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe” (SHARE)
Dr. Barbara Schaan
The Collection of Biomarkers in the Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe - Findings and Perspectives
Christin Czaplicki, M.Sc.
Who is care-giving? Assessing the quantity of people who are engaged in voluntary care work
Dr. Barbara Schaan
Dr. Julie Korbmacher
Enhancing SHARE survey data: administrative records and new biomarkers

Schaan, Barbara; Korbmacher, Julie (2012): "Collection of Biomarkers and Linkage of Administrative Data in the “Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe” (SHARE)", In: Proceedings of the 10th Conference on Health Survey Research Methods, pp. 199 - 206.

Hank, Karsten; Jürges, Hendrik; Schaan, Barbara (2009): "Die Erhebung biometrischer Daten im Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe - Befunde und Perspektiven". In: Methoden - Daten - Analysen, 3 (1), S. 97 - 108.