Research on Early Life and Aging Trends and Effects (RELATE) Files

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The RELATE data are cross national data that contain information which can be used to examine the effects of early life conditions on older adult health (heart disease, diabetes, obesity, functionality, mortality, and self-reported health). The complete cross sectional/longitudinal dataset (n=147,278) was compiled from major studies of older adults or households across the world that, in most instances, are representative of the older adult population either nationally, in major urban centers, or in provinces. It includes over 180 variables with information on demographic and geographic variables along with information about early life conditions and life course events for older adults in low, middle, and high income countries. Selected variables were harmonized to facilitate cross national comparisons. The project received funding by the National Institute on Aging (Grant K25 AG027239).

ICPSR at the Institute for Social Research at the University of Michigan has released a subset of the RELATE data (n=88,273). The subset includes harmonized data of older adults from the following regions of the world: Africa (Ghana and South Africa), Asia (China and India), Latin America (Costa Rica and major cities in Latin America), and the United States (Puerto Rico and Wisconsin).

The Health and Retirement Study (HRS) was also used in the compilation of the larger RELATE dataset and these data are now available for public release on the HRS website. Once downloaded from the HRS site, the HRS data (n=12,527) can easily be appended to the RELATE data now being released through ICPSR. As part of this release, you can also download the note to researchers and the codebook.

To access the RELATE data at ICPSR use the following link: The link will take you to the study description page where you can download documentation and data files. You will be prompted for your ICPSR account number or prompted to set up an account with ICPSR in order to download the data at ICPSR. You will also be required to agree upon a terms of use for the data.

Please refer to the user guide that accompanies the RELATE data at ICPSR for more detailed information regarding the construction of the cross national data: McEniry, M., Moen, S., & McDermott, J. (2013). Methods report on the compilation of the RELATE cross national data on older adults from 20 low, middle and high income countries. Ann Arbor, MI: University of Michigan.

Contributed projects based on HRS public data are provided by researchers who want to share their work with the research community. Researchers interested in contributing their own products are invited to contact us at HRS does not produce or support these products and is not responsible for their content or use. They are provided here as a service to the research community.

Product Details

Latest Release
Jun 2013 (v1.0)

ICPSR at the Institute for Social Research (ISR) at the University of Michigan

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