Life expectancy by socio-economic position and diploma in France: the difference between executives and blue-collar workers remains stable

Nathalie Blanpain, Institut National de la Statistique et des Etudes Economiques (INSEE)

We use the French Longitudinal data source on individuals. For a sample of individuals (those born in a fixed list of 16 days, regardless the year of birth), the EDP combined information from vital events registers and from the censuses since 1968. We compute age specific mortality rates by socio-economic position and, for the first time in France, by diploma. We defined 7 groups of occupation at the date of the census and 5 groups of diploma. Mortality rates are computed over a period of 9 years after each census : 1976-1984, 1983-1991, 1991-1999, 2000-2008. Since 2004, the census is no more a comprehensive data source, but a compilation of surveys collected each year. Thus, we use 9 census surveys (2004-2012) and 5 years (2009-2013). Mortality rates are smoothed using the Brass method. In France, men aged 35 could expect to live 7 years longer than what was expected at the end of the 70s. For women, the increase is slighter : +5.5 years. Social inequalities between executives and blue-collar workers remained stable. The difference in life expectancy at the age of 35 between executives and blue-collar workers is 6 years for men and 3 years for women (in 2009-2013). Men without a diploma live on average 7.5 years less than men with a diploma above the bachelor’s degree (the difference is 4 years for women). For men, an additional diploma leads to a longer life expectancy. By contrast, all women who have a diploma have the same life expectancy, whatever the diploma is. Those who have no diploma at all live less longer. Women live longer than men and the less qualified women live longer than the most qualified men. In particular, life expectancy of female manual workers is higher (0.8 year) than the male executives one.

Presented in Poster Session 1