The evolution of mortality shows a marked deceleration at older ages. This phenomenon is generally thought to be an effect of selection: mortality decelerates because it progressively selects the most robust individuals in the cohort. Other processes, however, may contribute to mortality deceleration as well. People may not be passive in the face of ageing and may try to counter it by modifying their behaviours and lifestyles. In this paper, I propose a method to test whether selection is to be considered the unique mechanism responsible for mortality deceleration. I applied this method to the life tables of selected female cohorts drawn from the Human Mortality Database. The results indicate mortality decelerates more rapidly than predicted by the selection theory.
Rethinking mortality deceleration / Salinari, G.. - In: BIODEMOGRAPHY AND SOCIAL BIOLOGY. - ISSN 1948-5565. - 64:2(2018), pp. 127-138. [10.1080/19485565.2018.1511414]