Next Science Café Cleveland to explore reasons for differentiation in life expectancy rates by state

Science Cafe Cleveland logoHow long we live is heavily influenced by where we live. Within the United States, life expectancy ranges from 81 years in Hawaii to just 75 years in Mississippi. Is this difference large in the scheme of things? Yes. The range in life expectancy across states exceeds the range between comparable high-income countries.

Why does life expectancy differ so much between U.S. states? Does it reflect differences between states in their populations? For example, Mississippians are more likely to be low-educated and poorer than are Hawaiians. Or does it reflect differences between states in their political economies? For example, compared to Hawaii, Mississippi spends less on public education, ranks lower on its Medicaid program, and imposes fewer taxes on cigarettes.

This month’s Science Café Cleveland will feature a talk titled “Why do Ohioans live longer than West Virginians but shorter than Minnesotans?” by Jennifer Karas Montez, assistant professor of sociology.

The discussion will explore why populations in some U.S. states live longer than others. It will focus on women and illustrate how states have unique and stronger consequences for women’s than men’s life expectancy. 

The event will take place June 9 from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. at its new location—the Tasting Room at Great Lakes Brewing Company (2701 Carroll Ave.). The discussion will begin around 7 p.m.

A limited menu is available for purchase before and during the event. Last call is at 8:45 p.m.

Attendees are advised to arrive early to get a good seat, as past Science Café events have reached capacity or standing room only.

The event is sponsored by Case Western Reserve University chapter of Sigma Xi, WCPN ideastream and Great Lakes Brewing Company.