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HRS-harmonized studies all over the World

The Health and Retirement Study (HRS)
The University of Michigan Health and Retirement Study (HRS) surveys more than 22,000 Americans over the age of 50 every two years. Supported by the National Institute on Aging (NIA U01AG009740), the study paints an emerging portrait of an aging America's physical and mental health, insurance coverage, financial status, family support systems, labor market status, and retirement planning. The full scope of the study is described in this graphical overview of the data collection process. HRS data products are available without cost to researchers and analysts. User Registration is required in order to download files.  HRS is collecting now the following biomarker data: blood pressure,  breathing, hand strength,  balance test, walking test, weight, height, waist, saliva samples and blood spots. The last data available include 2008 wave.  HRS data are also available through the RAND repository.

English Longitudinal Study on Ageing (ELSA)   
The English Longitudinal Study of Ageing (ELSA) is the first study in the UK to connect the full range of topics necessary to understand the economic, social, psychological and health elements of the ageing process. ELSA aims to study a sample of people over the age of 50 every two years in order to see how people's health, economic and social circumstances change over time. One of the study's key aims is to help the government plan for an ageing population and longer periods of retirement, and ensure that the UK's healthcare and pension systems will be able to meet everyone's needs.  ELSA is modelled on a similar study in the US (the Health and Retirement Study) and is being conducted jointly by National Centre for Social Research (NatCen), University College London (UCL) and the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS). ELSA data can be accessed through the RAND Repository or ESDS Longitudinal.

Survey of Health, Ageing, and Retirement in Europe (SHARE)
The Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe (SHARE) is a multidisciplinary and cross-national panel database of micro data on health, socio-economic status and social and family networks of more than 45,000 individuals aged 50 or over. Eleven countries contributed data to the 2004 SHARE baseline study. They are a balanced representation of the various regions in Europe, ranging from Scandinavia (Denmark and Sweden) through Central Europe (Austria, France, Germany, Switzerland, Belgium, and the Netherlands) to the Mediterranean (Spain, Italy and Greece). Further data were collected in 2005-06 in Israel. Two 'new' EU member states - the Czech Republic and Poland - as well as Ireland joined SHARE in 2006 and participated in the second wave of data collection in 2006-07. The survey’s third wave of data collection, SHARELIFE, collects detailed retrospective life-histories in thirteen countries in 2008-09. SHARE is coordinated centrally at the Mannheim Research Institute for the Economics of Aging (MEA). It is harmonized with the U.S. Health and Retirement Study (HRS) and the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing (ELSA). Data collected include health variables (e.g. self-reported health, health conditions, physical and cognitive functioning, health behaviour, use of health care facilities), bio-markers (e.g. grip strength, body-mass index, peak flow), psychological variables (e.g. psychological health, well-being, life satisfaction), economic variables (current work activity, job characteristics, opportunities to work past retirement age, sources and composition of current income, wealth and consumption, housing, education), and social support variables (e.g. assistance within families, transfers of income and assets, social networks, volunteer activities). In addition, the SHARE data base features anchoring vignettes from the COMPARE project and variables and indicators created by the AMANDA RTD-Project.

Korean Longitudinal Study on Aging (KLoSA)
The purpose of KLoSA is to create the basic data needed to devise and implement effective social, economic policies to address the trends that emerge in the process of population ageing. The data will help identify and observe different dimensions of an aging society, build datasets that enable studies in different fields, and generate data comparable with similar panel studies in other countries (eg. U.S., Europe) that can provide the basis for policy-making and academic studies. The study subjects of KLoSA include about 10,000 individuals 45 years and older. Topics under KLoSA are grouped into the following categories: Demographics, Family, Health,  Employment, Income, Assets, Subjective Expectations and Satisfaction. Questions in KLoSA are harmonazed with corresponding questions in HRS. The first wave of KLoSA was conducted in 2006. KLoSA data are available through the RAND Repository.

Indonesia Family Life Survey (IFLS)
Indonesia Family Life Survey (IFLS) is an ongoing longitudinal study of individuals, households, communities, and facilities. The household component of the survey covers economic well-being (consumption, income, and assets)\; education, migration, and labor market outcomes; marriage, fertility, and contraceptive use\; health status including biomarkers, use of health care, and health insurance\; relationships among coresident and non-coresident family members\; household decision-making\; and participation in community activities. The community and facility component of the survey provides detailed information from the communities in which IFLS households are located and from the facilities that serve residents of those communities. These data cover aspects of the physical and social environment, infrastructure, employment opportunities, food prices, access to health and educational facilities, and the quality and prices of services available at those facilities. Every adult household member is individually interviewed and movers are tracked to their new location. Interviews were conducted in 1993, 1997, 1998 (on a subsample), and 2000.

Chinese Health, Aging, and Retirement Longitudinal Study (CHARLS)
The China Health and Retirement Longitudinal Study (CHARLS) is a biennial survey in China being conducted by the National School of Development (China Center for Economic Research) at Peking University. CHARLS aims to be representative of the residents of China age 45 and older, with no upper age limit. The sample size is estimated to be around 10,000 households and 17,000 individuals. The baseline of the CHARLS pilot took place in two provinces in the fall of 2008 and the next wave will take place in 2011. Data on biomeasures are available through the RAND repository.

TILDA - The Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing, University of Dublin, Trinity College
The Irish LongituDinal Study on Ageing (TILDA) is the most comprehensive study on ageing ever undertaken in Ireland.  This ground-breaking study will explore the health, lifestyles and financial situation of 8,000 to 10,000 people as they grow older, and observe how their circumstances change over a 10 year period. The study is being carried out by Trinity College Dublin in collaboration with an inter-disciplinary panel of scientific researchers, with expertise in various fields of ageing. Biomeasures include anthropometry, blood pressure, walking speed and tests of balance, eyesight and hearing, assessment of lung function as well as blood samples (venipuncture).

Japanese Study on Aging and Retirement (J-STAR)
Japanese Study of Aging and Retirement (JSTAR) is a panel survey of elderly people aged 50 or older conducted by the Research Institute of Economy, Trade and Industry (hereinafter "RIETI"), Hitotsubashi University, and, more recently, the University of Tokyo. The data collected in this survey include diverse information on the economic, social, and health conditions of elderly people. In addition, the survey is designed to ensure, to the maximum extent possible, comparability with preceding surveys such as the Health and Retirement Study (HRS) in the United States, the Survey of Health, Aging and Retirement in Europe (SHARE) in continental Europe, and the English Longitudinal Study of Aging (ELSA) in the United Kingdom. Therefore, by analyzing JSTAR data, researchers can track down the characteristics of the Japanese elderly population both in terms of their specificity and universality in the world.

Mexican Health and Ageing Study (MHAS)
The Mexican Health and Aging Study (MHAS) is a prospective panel study of health and aging in Mexico. MHAS is supported by a grant from the National Institutes of Health/ National Institute on Aging (AG 18016, B.J. Soldo, P.I.). The study is a collaborative effort among researchers from the Universities of Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Wisconsin in the U.S., and the Instituto Nacional de Estadística, Geografia e Informática (INEGI) in Mexico. The baseline survey includes a nationally representative sample of Mexicans aged 50 and over and their spouse/partners regardless of their age. A direct interview was sought with each individual, and proxy interviews were obtained when poor health or temporary absence precluded a direct interview. Health measures include self-reports of conditions, symptoms, functional status, hygienic behaviors (e.g., smoking and drinking history), use/source/costs of health care services, depression, pain, reading and cognitive performance tests. Interviewers measured weight, height; waist, hip, and calf circumference, knee length, and timed one-leg stands for a random subsample (20%) of the respondents.Two waves of MHAS were conducted so far: in 2001 and in 2003.

Study on Global Ageing and Adult Health (SAGE)
The WHO Multi-Country Studies unit developed the Study on Global AGEing and Adult Health (SAGE) as part of a Longitudinal Survey Programme to compile comprehensive longitudinal information on the health and well-being of adult populations and the ageing process. The core SAGE collects data on respondents aged 18+ years, with an emphasis on populations aged 50+ years, from nationally representative samples in six countries (China, Ghana, India, Mexico, Russian Federation and South Africa). The survey instruments and methods described on this website were adapted from those used by the World Health Survey (WHS) and/or from 16 surveys on ageing (including the US Health and Retirement Survey (HRS) and the UK English Longitudinal Study of Ageing (ELSA)).

Longitudinal Aging Study in India (LASI)
The Longitudinal Aging Study in India (LASI) focuses on the health, economic, and social well-being of India's elderly population. LASI is conceptually comparable to the Health and Retirement Study (HRS) in the United States and is appropriately harmonized with other health and retirement studies, including its sister surveys in Asia – such as the Chinese Health and Retirement Longitudinal Study (CHARLS) and the Korean Longitudinal Study of Aging (KLoSA) – thereby allowing for cross-country comparison. LASI also takes account of features unique to India, including its institutional and cultural characteristics. An important feature of the LASI pilot survey instrument is the collection of dried blood spots (DBS), which can be analyzed to provide researchers with quantitative data on health. In particular, the LASI team proposes to analyze the DBS for the presence of apolipoproteins B-1 and A, C-reactive protein (CRP), Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), and hemoglobin (Hb). This study is in progress now.