Course – 14-16th November 2018: Using nationwide register data

The second course of the IDEAR Early Career Training Programme will take place in Stockholm, at the Karolinska Institutet, 14-16 November 2018. It will run over three intensive days, including Wednesday and Thursday evenings. We will start at 8:30 am on Wednesday, meaning that you will need to arrive in Stockholm on Tuesday 13 November.

This course will introduce participants to the types of register data available in different countries, how to work with them and what the pros and cons are of this sort of data. We will also handle statistical challenges of data on sickness absence, return to work, disability pension and old-age pension.

Preliminary programme

Wednesday 14 November 2018

8:30 Welcome, short presentations, course expectations

9:00 About IDEAR and the IDEAR early career training programme

9:05 What do we mean by ‘register data’?

9.30 Examples of register data available at the Division of Insurance Medicine

  • Different types of outcomes: work, return to work, sickness absence, disability pension, death: how to define them, how to measure them, using register data? What analytical methods to use? Presentations of different types of studies based on register data.
  • Concepts of health and morbidity in use of different types of data
  • How to use register data to get the information needed to compute them?

12:00 Photo time!

12:15 Lunch


  • Group work: (what type of data do I use? How could I use register data to answer my research questions?)
  • Reports from groups
  • What different types of data do you find in registers? (How can registers be linked? How can register-data be linked to survey data? What is the quality of different types of register data? What data to include if starting up a register? What to be aware of when using register data, including ethical aspects?) Study designs when using register data (KA)
  • GDPR
  • Pros and cons of register-based research. Discussions and questions

17:00 Reflections

17:30 Course dinner, more detailed presentations of participants

Thursday 15 November 2018

8:30 What have we learned so far?
9.00 Continued about registers:

  • If you can’t link data, what other options are there?
  • Statistical challenges in the analysis of data on sickness absence when analysing longitudinal data (KA)

Discussions and questions

  • Trajectory analyses (GEE-models) When can we use them? How to interpret results?

12:15 Lunch


  • To use twin registers (P Svedberg (PS))
  • Group work: Design problems in register research.
  • Reports from groups
  • Gender aspects in this type of research (related to the type of data that is available – that is – focus on gender bias in registration and compilation of data)
  • Register data that can be used in this type of research available in different countries: Denmark, the UK, Finland, France, Sweden (Several lecturers, TBC)

15:45-17.00 Group work, preparing presentation of two of the six articles that were to be read in advance.

Free time, optional joint dinner

Friday 16 November 2018

8:30 What have we learned so far?

  • Questions and unsolved issues

9:00 Group presentations of studies, according to specific questions

  • Discussions

11.15 Problems and possibilities when using register data for comparative studies between countries

12:15 Lunch

13:15 Ideas for collaborations or new projects (group work)

15.00 Reports from Groups

16:00 Course evaluation

16.15 Information about the next Training schools

16.30 End


  • Kristina Alexanderson (KA), professor, Karolinska Institutet, Sweden
  • Emilie Friberg, PhD, researcher, Karolinska Institutet, Sweden
  • Ellenor Mittendorfer Rutz, PhD, ass prof
  • Kerstin Nilsson, statistician
  • Magnus Stenbeck, PhD, ass prof
  • Pia Svedberg, PhD, ass prof, Karolinska Institutet, Sweden
  • Others to be confirmed.

Course management group

Target group

Junior members of the IDEAR network, included in the Early Career Training Program. You do not need to have worked with register data before, rather, the training school is to inspire such work and to get a better understanding of how results from such studies can be interpreted.


Karolinska Institutet, Campus Solna, Stockholm, Sweden.


All have read six studies based on register data before the course– they will be sent to registered participants ten days before course starts.

Participants need to arrive in Stockholm Tuesday 13 November, as we start early on Wednesday morning (8:30 am).

Aims of the Training school are to help young researchers to develop competence regarding use of registers in aging research and to interpret such results. Another aim is to promote networking and collaborations between junior researchers in this research area. This means that we encourage the participants to also participate in the following training courses that will be arranged by IDEAR.


ASAP to Emilie Friberg

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