Calibrating Gompertz in Reverse: Mortality-Adjusted (Biological) Ages around the World

38 Pages Posted: 12 Nov 2019

See all articles by Moshe A. Milevsky

Moshe A. Milevsky

York University - Schulich School of Business

Date Written: November 5, 2019


This paper develops a statistical and methodological framework for inverting the Gompertz-Makeham (GM) law of mortality for heterogenous populations in a manner consistent with a compensation law of mortality (CLaM), to formally define a global mortality-adjusted (biological) age. It implements and calibrates this framework using rates from the Human Mortality Database (HMD) to illustrate its salience and applicability. Among other things, this paper demonstrates that when properly benchmarked, the global mortality-adjusted (biological) age of a 55-year-old Swedish male is 48, whereas a 55-year-old Russian male is closer in age to 67. The motivation for this (new) framework for presenting age and relative aging is that this metric could be used for pension and retirement policy. In a world of growing mortality heterogeneity and the need for salient longevity metrics beyond simple life expectancy, “biological age” might help capture the public’s attention and induce them to take action, for example to work longer and retire later. Perhaps a mortality-adjusted (biological) age could even be used to determine pension eligibility.

Keywords: Pensions, Insurance, Retirement, Longevity, Salience

JEL Classification: G22

Suggested Citation

Milevsky, Moshe Arye, Calibrating Gompertz in Reverse: Mortality-Adjusted (Biological) Ages around the World (November 5, 2019). Available at SSRN: or

Moshe Arye Milevsky (Contact Author)

York University - Schulich School of Business ( email )

4700 Keele Street
Toronto, Ontario M3J 1P3

Register to save articles to
your library


Paper statistics

Abstract Views
PlumX Metrics