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research question

  1. I am conducting some possibly odd research, but am interested in opinions or possibly expert information if a so-minded expert actually finds this topic. Considering child mortality rates at the turn of the 20th century and the rise of geriatric care and medical advances by the end of that century and into the 21st, is the following statement true: It is more likely for a child born in 1995 to see three centuries than for a child born in 1895 to see two. That is, if born 1995 it is more likely to live 105 years than if born in 1895 to live over five years.

    The blog I need help with is

  2. Opinion here, but you are posing an extremely difficult question because you are suggesting comparing actual mortality rates (i.e. death rates that have already occurred) with projected death rates which extend nearly 100 years into the future. I think it is highly unlikely (and unadvisable) to believe that any such comparison would be more than either a guess or wishful thinking.

    Far to many factors to consider including general infant mortality, availibility and advanvancements in health care, enviromental factors (pollution, enviromental changes) technological changes (think of the effect of industrialization on child mortality). additionally, your question, as posed places not limits on the population considered... are you meaning to include children from "third-world) countries, or just advanced industrial ones.

  3. I agree with habituatedbuddhist. He did use the term "likely," though, so he's stating that it is a guess. I like what you are driving at. This is a thesis question so it would help your research if you tackled it like a graduate student and focused on your question first.

    IE: What "child" are you talking about -one that grew up in Riverside or one that grew up in Calcutta?

    ps: There is documentation that "medical advances" have been treating diseases caused by humans so if you are trying to imply that the world we live in now is healthier due to medicine, that's like opening Pandora's box.

  4. Thank you both. First, this is not a thesis question, but rather one to stimulate thinking and in a small way related to a project, not one that needs more than opinion. I did the graduate student thing. This question is more for fun and thought stimulation than knowledge.

    There must be dozens of Internet sources speculating life expectancy of a child born today, either limiting it to industrialized nations, less technically advanced nations or both. Personally, when I refer to child, I refer to all children, for we are a human species and not a bunch of housewives and househusbands from Orange County. As for "third world nations," I do not care for the term. In 1895, there was no third world, as the term's origin relates to post WW2 Allies and Communists, with the third world relating to everyone else. Narcistic, I think.

    The environment does play in. If we keep destroying the ozone, none of us will see another century or possibly decade. If you buy in on 12-21-12, we won't make it past Macy's lay-away schedule. Overpopulation also plays in, as we have a lot more people on the planet than in 1895. The world is changing as I write this sentence. Everything is a factor.

    Medicine is a Pandora's Box. Yes, we are curing diseases we caused. But we can transplant pigs valves into cardiac patients who would have died 25 years ago. It's true that we fed them the cholestrol that made them need the valve. About 150 years ago, they worked themselves to death. Now, in an industrialized nation, we are among the laziest people who ever lived. But, we have pig valves. Instead of dying in the fields working too hard, we are living obese lives in the line at McDonalds who never seem to get my order right--but that's another topic. People are living older, healthier and usually poorer than any time in recent history. Industrialized nations enjoy this glut of these people. Among the longest-lived individuals, India and Mongolia currently host many of the oldest. Geneticists may someday cure all diseases. Or, they may cause the Death Knoll. I saw I Am Legend.

    In 1895, there was a relatively known chance of live birth and of survival past infancy. I've not found the rate, but the rate exists and is known and finite. For discussion purposes, let's say there was a 95% chance of surviving past age five. There also was a finite rate of those who would live past 100 years of age. What happens tomorrow will happen. Until then, all we can do is guess. If someone can predict accurately, forget this question and tell me Saturday's Powerball numbers.

    Fundamentally, my topic question is mathematics. All things withstanding, do people think there is a better chance for our 15-year-olds to live another 90 years than the 1895 child mortality rate? Nonetheless, I think it's an interesting question, more interesting--at least to me--than the Republican Front-runner in NH and Iowa.

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