May 10: Brown Bag talk by Philipp Hessel on Protecting Health in Hard Times

On Tuesday, May 10th the Columbia Aging Center welcomes Dr. Philipp Hessel, David E. Bell Fellow from Harvard School of Public Health, to speak in our Brown Bag Seminar series. His talk is entitled, "Protecting health in hard times: The changing role of families in mitigating adverse effects of labor market shocks." It will be held on the fourth floor of the Allan Rosenfield Building, in room ARB 440 (722 West 168th Street) on Tuesday, May 10th from 1:00 - 2:30pm. To read more about the Dr. Hessel and his talk, please read below. 



Employment prospects for large parts of the workforce are becoming increasingly insecure in the context of technological change, globalization and related shifts in the demand for low and high skilled workers. As a result, experiences of job-loss and unemployment are becoming an ever more common feature of individuals’ career trajectories. While evidence suggests that job-loss, job-displacement and unemployment are associated with poorer health, however, very little is known about the potential mediating role of families. This is surprising given the crucial role that families play in individuals’ health production. Assessing the role of families as a potential mediator of adverse health-effects of labor market shocks is particularly relevant as being married is becoming less common. In consequence, younger cohorts may lack a crucial resource to buffer adverse effects of job-loss or recessions, potentially leading to a major public health issue. Drawing on life-course data from the Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe (SHARELIFE) this paper investigates the changing role of families in mitigating adverse health-effects of job-loss as well as macroeconomic shocks across space (11 European countries) and time (1930-2005).



Philipp Hessel is a David E. Bell Post-Doctoral Fellow at the Harvard Center for Population and Development Studies. His research focuses on the interplay between individual, economic and institutional factors and how they shape health over the life-course. More specifically, current projects address questions such as: What are the long-term effects of recessions on health and cognition? Does early retirement have detrimental or beneficial effects on health; or whether more generous social protection systems reduce health inequalities? Much of his research is based on linkages between data from the Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe (SHARE), the Health and Retirement Study (HRS) and other cohorts with historical and geo-spatial information on economic conditions, social policies and other macro-level characteristics. He received his PhD in Demography from the London School of Economics (LSE) and also holds degrees in economics and sociology from Freie Universität Berlin.