An attempt to reestimate recent mortality trends in two Caucasian countries

Géraldine Duthé, Institut National d'Études Démographiques (INED)
Irina Badurashvili, Georgian Centre of Population Research
Karine Kuyumjyan, National Statistical Service of the Republic of Armenia
France Meslé, Institut National d'Études Démographiques (INED)
Jacques Vallin, Institut National d'Études Démographiques (INED)

In the framework of the unfavourable trends observed in the ex-Soviet Union area since the 1960s, it is of particular interest to look at the specific evolution of Caucasian countries, which have always shown mortality levels and trends different from the rest of the Soviet world. To what extent such differences were related to data quality has always been questionable, but since the Soviet Union split the question has become even more acute. Not only the control of migration flows that characterized the Soviet system collapsed and Caucasian countries were subject to different political conflicts and wars that disrupted many statistical series but civil registration is also incomplete. After an overview of data quality issues, information given by different data sources will be considered. Censuses performed in the early 2000s in both countries provide a reliable population estimate. They were used by Statistical Offices to reassess population numbers in the 1990s. A specific attention will be devoted to assumptions made on migration flows. To estimate the under-registration of vital events (deaths and births), different sources will be taken into account: the double collection which have been implemented in Georgia since 2003, and recent demographic surveys in both countries (2000 and 2005 Armenian DHS, 1999 and 2005 Georgian RHS, 2006 Georgian GGS). In the last part, an attempt to estimate corrected infant mortality rates and life expectancies for Georgia and Armenia will be made. The impact of these changes on the mortality level will be examined.

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Presented in Session 18: Data Collection and Analysis Issues