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School of Social and Political Science: Staff profiles


Jeroen Spijker

Jeroen Spijker
Dr Jeroen Spijker
Senior Research Fellow
5.05 Chrystal Macmillan Building 15a George Square Edinburgh UK EH8 9LD
+44 (0)1316513867
Research Interests
Demography, Population research use, Sociology of social groups (Family, kinship and marriage), Population Characteristics, Population health, Population ageing


BA Social Sciences (majors in Sociology & Human Geography) and a Post-graduate diploma in Applied Statistics, Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand.

MA Spatial Sciences (specialisation demography), University of Groningen, The Netherlands.

PhD Spatial Sciences (specialisation demography), University of Groningen, The Netherlands.

Research interests

Demography: Mortality in Europe, Spain and Catalonia: gender differences, causes of death, ageing, epidemiological transition, life course, integrating contextual factors in cause-specific mortality projections.

Health: Changes in health and nutrition (Spanish National Health Surveys 1987 - 2006); Disability and the effect of caring for others on labour force participation in Spain (EDDES 99 Survey)

Sociology: Marriage theory, assortative mating (age and educational homogamy); Household composition of young couples; Family formation after widowhood and divorce.

Data: Inventory of all world censuses since 1960 on the way de facto marriage is measured

Publications – peer-reviewed in English-language Journals

Spijker J, MacInnes J (2013), Population ageing:the timebomb that isn’t? British Medical Journal 347:f6598.

Spijker J, MacInnes J (2013), Population ageing in Scotland: Time for a re-think? Scottish Affairs 85: 53-74

Esteve A, Lopez Ruiz LÀ, Spijker J (2013). Why did educational expansion not increased women's age at union formation in Latin America from 1970 to 2000? Demographic Research, 28 (3): 63-76.

Esteve A, Spijker J, Riffe TLM, García J (2012), Spousal and parental roles among female student populations in 55 low- and middle-income countries. Vienna Yearbook of Population Research 2012, pp

Spijker, J, Cámara, AD, Blanes, A (2012), The health transition and biological living standards: adult height and mortality in 20th-century Spain. Economics and Human Biology, 10 (3): 276–288.

Spijker J, Esteve A (2011), "Changing household patterns of young couples in low-income countries". The History of the Family, 16 (4): 437-455.

Cámara AD, Spijker J (2010), Super size Spain: A cross-sectional and quasi-cohort trend analysis of adult overweight and obesity in an accelerated transition country. Journal of Biosocial Science, 42 (3): 377-93.

Spijker J, van Wissen L (2010), Socioeconomic determinants of male mortality in Europe: the absolute and relative income hypotheses revisited. Genus, LXVI (1): 37-61.

Spijker J (2009), Explanations for the age, sex, spatial and temporal structure of Czech mortality for the period 1987-97. Environment and Planning A, 41 (3): 682-702.

Spijker J, Blanes A (2009), Mortality in Catalonia in the context of the third, fourth and future phases of the epidemiological transition theory. Demographic Research, 20 (8): 129-168.

Spijker J, van Poppel F, van Wissen L (2007), Explaining new trends in the gender gap of mortality: Insights from a regional trend-analysis of the Netherlands. Vienna Yearbook of Population Res. 2007, pp. 61-92.

Peer-reviewed in journals in other languages

Spijker J Esteve A, Lopez Ruiz LÀ (2012), Tres décadas de cambio y continuidad en la nupcialidad latinoamericana. Notas de Población, 94: 11-36.

Spijker J (2012), Trayectorias familiares después de la viudedad en España: Un estado de la cuestión. Sistema: Revista de Ciencias Sociales, 225: 21-40.

Blanes A, Spijker J (2011), Las desigualdades territoriales de mortalidad en la España de los años sesenta: una aproximación a sus niveles y determinantes. Revista de Demografía Histórica, XXIX (1): 25-53.

Blanes A, Spijker J (2010), Supervivència i patrons de mortalitat de la població catalana, 1960-2007. Treballs de la Societat Catalana de Geografia, 24 (69): 67-95.

Spijker J, Pérez Díaz J (2010), La ocupación laboral de los convivientes con afectados por discapacidades. Un análisis multivariable. Revista Internacional de Sociología, 68 (2): 311-332.

Spijker J, Pérez Díaz J, Cámara AD (2008), Cambios generacionales de la estatura en la España del siglo XX a partir de la Encuesta Nacional de Salud. Revista Estadística Española, 50 (169): 571-604.

Research monographs and chapters in collective volumes

López-Ruiz LÁ, Spijker J, Esteve A (2011), Los regímenes de nupcialidad Latinoamericanos en un contexto de expansión educativa. In: Binstock G., Melo J. (eds.), Nupcialidad y Familia en América Latina Actual. Serie Investigaciones No. 11. ALAP, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. ISBN 978-85-62016-13-4. Pp. 91-121.

Esteve, A., J. García, J. Spijker, R. McCaa (2009), "Integrated European Census Microdata (IECM) Samples: Enhancing the study of ageing with high precision over-samples of the oldest-old". In: Eurostat (eds.) Work session on statistical data confidentiality, Manchester 17-19 December 2007. Luxembourg: Eurostat, pp. 407-416. ISBN: 978-92-79-12055-8.

Spijker J (2004), Socioeconomic determinants of regional mortality differences in Europe. PhD Thesis. Dutch University Press, Amsterdam, the Netherlands. ISBN: 90 3619 012 6.

Last 10 inernational peer-reviewed conference papers (54 contributions since 1998)

Spijker J, MacInnes J (2013). Population ageing in Scotland: time for a rethink?” British Society for Population Studies Conference, Swansea, 9-11 September.

Spijker J, MacInnes J (2013). Flexible ageing: new ways to measure the diverse experience of population ageing in Scotland” Conference of the British Society of Gerontology Oxford, 11-13 September.

Spìjker J, Esteve A, Cusidó TA, McCaa R. (2013).  Non-marital cohabitation in the census questionnaires worldwide. XXVIIth IUSSP International Population Conference (Session 059: The meaning of cohabitation), Busan, South Korea. 26-31 August.

Spijker J.J.A (2012). Legal custody arrangements of separated parents in Spain. Congress on “Pères en solitaires : paternités contemporaines et nouvelles trajectoires familiales” organised by Centre Norbert Elias. Vieille Charité, Marseille, France, 29-30 November.

Esteve A, Spijker J. Cusidó TA (2012), La cohabitación medida a través de los censos: estudio histórico y comparativo, 1960-2010. Congress on "Censos a lo largo de la Historia. 1591 a 2011" organized by the Asociación de Demografía Histórica-ADEH and Instituto de Economía, Geografía y Demografía (IEGD)-CSIC. Madrid, 18-19 June.

Riffe T, Esteve E, Spijker J, García J (2012), Student, Spouse, Parent? A Worldwide Test of the Role Incompatibility Hypothesis among Adolescents and Young Adults. European Population Conference. Stockholm, Sweden. 13-16 June.

Spijker J, Esteve E, Cusidó TA (2012), Census measures of union formation in the time of cohabitation. European Population Conference. Stockholm, Sweden. 13-16 June.

Riffe T, Esteve E, Spijker J, García J (2012), Student, Spouse, Parent? A Worldwide Test of the Role Incompatibility Hypothesis among Adolescents and Young Adults. Population Association of America Annual Meeting, San Francisco, USA. 3-5 May.

Esteve A, Spijker J, Riffe T, García J (2011), “Education and the Global Fertility Transition”. International Conference on Education and the Global Fertility Transition, Vienna, 30 November-1 December.

Esteve A, López LÁ, Spijker J (2011), “Nuptiality Regimes and Educational Expansion in Latin America: Revisiting the Stability Hypothesis”. Population Association of America Annual Meeting, Washington, D.C., USA. 31 March-2 April.

Student supervision

At the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona

Masters’ thesis. Celia Fernandez Carro: “Mortalidad y Estado Civil en España, 1991-2001”

Masters’ thesis. Anna Safarova: "Ageing in St. Petersburg according to different ageing indicators 

PhD ”research report”. Núria Calduch Verdiell “Old age mortality. The state of the art”. 

PhD thesis. Celia Fernandez Carro: "Ageing in Place in Europe: A Multidimensional approach to independent living in later life".

Topics interested in supervising

PhD and MSc in Sociology in the field of social demography and ageing.

If you are interested in being supervised by Jeroen Spijker, please see the links below for more information:

PhD in Sociology; MSc (R) Sociology