Although aging is a global phenomenon, there are large differences across countries in both the speed of aging and the current state they are in. Furthermore countries adopt vastly different policies. This creates a natural laboratory that scientists can use to understand how policies affect outcomes. This paper discusses under what circumstances data from different countries can be used for inference about policy effects. Although currently comparable health and retirement data are being collected in some 25 countries, the use of such data requires careful modeling of differences in institutions and in response styles across countries.
This paper series was made possible by the NIA funded RAND Center for the Study of Aging and the NICHD funded RAND Population Research Center.
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