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SHARB: Belgian party of the European Survey SHARE (Survey on Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe)

Research project AG/GG/099 (Research action AG)

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Description :

Ageing is one of the major challenges faced today by the Belgium society, as well as by most of European and industrialized countries. The implications of this evolution are multiple for the organization of the society as a whole, but in the first place for the sustainability of social protection schemes.

Several studies are undertaken in order to anticipate the expected changes in the society and the budgetary cost of the ageing process, but too often these studies are restrained to a defined institutional environment, that prevailing in Belgium at a particular point in time. The main purpose of this project is to enrol Belgium in a new international, multidisciplinary and longitudinal survey project: SHARE, Survey on Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe. SHARE addresses these limitations by interviewing every two years a representative sample of the population aged 50 years and more in several European countries.

This survey follows a common set-up across all countries with the goal of collecting data that are strictly comparable to allow cross-country research. The interviews will be face-to-face computer aided (CAPI) using questionnaires translated into French and in Dutch, and composed of modules designed by working groups of specialists in several fields:

- Physical health
- Mental health and psychological status
- Health care utilization
- The oldest-old
- Saving, assets, expectations and subjective probabilities
- Consumption, income and poverty
- Labour force participation, earnings and pension claims
- Family and social networks
- Intergenerational transfers

Summing up, the objective of this project is to fill the knowledge and information gaps with respect to ageing and to foster cross-national and multidisciplinary research using longitudinal data on households and individuals. The main innovation of the SHARE project lies in its multidimensional design, which combines multidisciplinarity, cross-national comparability, and longitudinality.
All scientists interested in the use of the collected data will have a free access to them. The only restrictions will be those imposed by the privacy and confidentiality regulations in Belgian and the European Union. The main objective of this survey is that it will be intensively used by all the professionnals investigating the ageing process and its consequences for the society.

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