Demographer; Teacher of applied Statistics and Demographic Methods

Sven Drefahl,
Senior Lecturer in Demography

I am a Senior Lecturer in Demography and my research spans a range of interdisciplinary topics at the intersection of Demography, Sociology, Epidemiology, Public Health, and Statistics.

I am currently studying the relationship between migration and mortality, determinants of COVID-19 mortality, and more generally the ageing of the Swedish population. The majority of my research is based on individual-level register data of the total Swedish population. Beyond that I am also interested in international trends of health and mortality and demographic methods.

I am currently teaching demographic methods and statistical methods at the advanced level. Given that I am a Demographer using mainly longitudinal register data I have expert knowledge on most flavors of hazard regression (aka survival analysis, aka event-history analysis). I have also a longstanding interest in demographic micro-simulations.

Sven Drefahl

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Photo: Östergötland, Sweden, close to Gunnar Andersson’s farm
Credit: Sven Drefahl

Most Recent publication

Billingsley S, Brandén M, Aradhya S, Drefahl S, Andersson G, Mussino E. COVID-19 mortality across occupations and secondary risks for elderly individuals in the household: A population register-based study. Scand J Work Environ Health. 2021 Oct 19:3992. doi: 10.5271/sjweh.3992. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 34665872.

This is the first population-level study to examine inequalities in COVID-19 mortality according to working-age individuals’ occupations and the indirect occupational effects on COVID-19 mortality of older individuals who live with them.

People who work as taxi or bus drivers, cleaners or in services were over-represented among those who have died from Covid-19 in Sweden. But, when taking other measures into account including income, education and country of birth, Covid-19 mortality was not linked to occupation for working aged adults.

However, elderly people, living with individuals in occupations where working from home is uncommon or who worked in delivery or postal services, had a higher risk of dying from Covid-19.

People who were not born in Sweden remain at higher risk of Covid-19 mortality compared to native Swedes after considering occupational factors.