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Research in the Centre for Fertility and Health

Our scientific goal is to greatly advance the understanding of health implications of changes in patterns of fertility and family structure, and to unravel the complex social and biological pathways involved.

Health implications of changes in patterns of fertility and family structure

In the last few decades we have witnessed marked changes in patterns of fertility and family structure in rich countries. These include increasing age at childbirth, a lower number of children born to each woman or man, greater use of assisted reproductive technology (ART), higher frequency of family disruptions, and increasingly complex family structures.

Elucidation of the complex biological and social causal mechanisms requires broad expertise. The multidisciplinary research team at Centre for Fertility and Health consists of epidemiologists, geneticists, demographers, sociologists and economists from Norway and abroad. The research team will study four integrated areas of research:

  • The impact of advanced maternal and paternal age at childbirth on diseases in parents and offspring.
  • Health consequences of subfertility and assisted reproductive technologies (ART) for parents and children.
  • Health consequences for other components of reproductive history (number of children/siblings, childlessness, age at first birth, interval between births) and family instability.
  • Intergenerational transmission of health.

Data Sources

We will make use of the unique Norwegian infrastructure of registries, cohorts and biobanks. The nationwide registries in Norway and other Nordic countries have been extensively used for medical and social science research. At the Centre for Fertility and Health we will take a long step beyond the current practice by integrating information from a large number of different registries with additional linkages to several surveys and cohort studies.

Population registries

Health registries



The Centre for Fertility and Health is a Centre of Excellence (SFF) at the Norwegian Institute of Public Health.