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Past Event

PLEASE NOTE NEW VENUE: Errors and illusions in late life ageing research: questioning forty years of late-life mortality research using open data and reproducible code

About the Speaker

Dr Saul Newman, Research Associate, Leverhulme Centre for Demographic Science

Saul is an interdisciplinary researcher with a career spanning genomics, medicine, plant science, and demography. Coming from a background in medical science but a strong focus on statistics and methods, Dr Newman has a history of pursuing research questions outside of his field. This has led to disruption, but also a deeply enriching career path through academia. 

Joining the University of Oxford has given Saul the opportunity to work on intensive, broad-scale human data. He aims to use these data to disrupt accepted wisdom in ageing research: a field that he views as ‘currently more interested in pitching fundable ideas to wealthy investors, than it is in solving fundamental scientific problems’. 

Dr Newman’s previous work involves theoretical solutions to the limits of human life, and an explanation of late-life mortality deceleration that has considerable cross-cultural predictive accuracy. This work illustrated that late-life ‘plateaus’ in mortality are caused by errors and, in some cases, rather curious statistical choices. In addition, Saul has worked with a broad spectrum of government, industry and academic stakeholders on diverse topics with a general focus on kin selection and networks, agronomy-via-AI, and the evolution of ageing. Saul has also made international news for debunking the concept of ‘blue zones’, and areas with high frequencies of people surviving past age 105, by highlighting such regions are predicted by an absence of birth and death certificates, higher old-age poverty rates, and (remarkably) a lower probability of reaching old age.


Please note that this is a Hybrid event - Online & Oxford Martin School


This event is part of a seminar series:

Hilary 2023 Seminar Series: Methodological Advances in Social and Health Care Research

Convenors: Dr Yanan Zhang & Kenneth Howse 

Event Details

19 January 2023 14:00 - 15:00


Oxford Martin School

34 Broad Street (corner of Holywell and Catte Streets) Oxford OX1 3BD