Researcher in Hyde Park Library Informal Discussion in Bethesda Office Hallway Conferernce NSHAP meeting in NORC offices Active older Americans A teaching moment in NORC's Hyde Park office Writing on the whiteboard, NORC Bethesda office

Center on the Demography and Economics of Aging

​The Center on the Demography and Economics of Aging (CoA), is one of seven research centers housed within NORC’s Academic Research Centers at the University of the Chicago. The CoA was established as an Exploratory Center in 1994 with a grant from the National Institute on Aging (NIA). Currently, the CoA is one of fourteen NIA funded Centers across the U.S. which investigate aspects of health and health care, the societal impact of population aging, and the economic and social circumstances of the elderly.

The Center operates using three cores, which facilitate and support an active program of research and training:

  • The Administration and Research Support Core, directed by Linda Waite, which provides general administrative support to Center associates
  • The Program Development Core, directed by Kathleen Cagney, consisting of a program of small-scale and pilot projects and support for new faculty development in aging;
  • The External Innovative Network Core has a focus on biomarkers in population-based aging research.

The Center supports a highly diverse faculty of 47 research affiliates in sociology, economics/business, the Pritzker School of Medicine, the School of Social Service Administration, and the Harris School of Public Policy. The research portfolios of faculty members draw upon expertise in medicine, epidemiology, and the biological and social sciences. The Center has nourished an environment for research in the demography and economics of aging by providing research support services, encouraging the development of new research projects and research foci, and facilitating collaborative research and teaching among scientists working in the field of aging research.

Areas of Expertise

  • Family
    • Cohabitation
    • Marriage
    • Childbearing
    • Divorce
    • Transitions
  • Gerontology
  • Health
    • Medicare and Medicaid
    • Health Insurance
    • Diabetes
    • Physician Practices
  • Health Economics
  • Housing
  • Neighborhoods and Communities
  • Special Populations
    • Disabled People
    • Elderly

Major Capabilities

  • Dissemination
  • Sample Design
  • Longitudinal Study Design
  • Data Collection
    • Biomeasure
  • Program and Policy Analysis and Research

Representative Projects

National Social Life, Health, and Aging Project (NSHAP). The National Social Life, Health and Aging Project (NSHAP) is a population-based study of health and social factors on a national scale, aiming to understand the well-being of older, community-dwelling Americans. More

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​The Demography Workshop website.
Learn​ more at the Center on Aging​ website.


Linda Waite

(773) 256-6333

Senior Staff

Linda Waite

Linda Waite
Senior Fellow and Director

Kathleen Cagney

Kathleen Cagney
Senior Fellow and Director

Sara A. Leitsch

Sara Henning
Senior Research Scientist