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Vitality 90+

Tampere University

The Vitality 90+ Study is an ongoing multidisciplinary research project focusing on longevity and the oldest old population. The study was initiated in 1995. The major research themes include time trends and predictors of health and functioning, quality of life, formal and informal care and services, very old age as a stage of life; subjective experiences of long life and biology of longevity; genetics, epigenetics, and the immune system.  

Data have been collected by mailed surveys from home-dwelling individuals aged 90 years and older in 1995, 1996 and 1998, and from all individuals in the age group in 2001, 2003, 2007, 2010, 2014 and 2018 in the city of Tampere. The survey data include altogether 5,934 individuals with 8,843 observations. National register data on mortality and health and social care use have been linked with the survey data. The population-based survey data with response rates around 80% in each study year and covering over 20 years period forms a unique data set. Face-to-face life story interviews have been conducted in 1995 and 2012. Physical performance tests and blood samples for biological measurements have been conducted for sub-samples in several years.

The survey data have been stored in the Finnish Social Science Data Archieve.

For more information: Vitality 90+


The project is motivated by the rapid changes in the population structure and by the increase in longevity. In Finland, the number of people aged 90 or older in 2017 was ten times higher than in the 1980s, and by 2060 it will reach a quarter of a million. Reliable information on the development of health and quality of life and need for services are needed for policy making and educating experts in the ageing society. 


The project improves understanding of the dynamics between longer life expectancy and the development of health and quality of life of the oldest old. The aims are to make visible the diverse lives and needs of the oldest old, to improve the position of older people in society, and to develop services for older people so that they can continue to enjoy a good life until the end.

Funding source

Academy of Finland, Pirkanmaa Hospital District, competetive research funding

Contact persons

Marja Jylhä
Professor/principal investigator
Marja.Jylha [at]
+358 40 588 9100

Linda Enroth
Post-doctoral researcher, Co-principal investigator
Linda.Enroth [at]
+358 401 901 647