Profile picture for user hayward.mark

Mark D. Hayward

Professor of Sociology, Centennial Commission Professor in the Liberal Arts, and Director of the Population Health Initiative, University of Texas at Austin
Areas of Expertise:

About Mark

Hayward’s primary research addresses how life course exposures and events influence the morbidity and mortality experiences of the adult population. Most recently, he has been investigating the fundamental inequalities in adult mortality in the United States arising from educational experience, differences in these associations by race and gender, and the growing educational inequality in mortality. 

Hayward is the chair-elect of the Sociology of Population section of the ASA, a member of the Committee on Population, National Academy of Sciences, and has served on a number of advisory boards of national studies of population health, the Population Association of America, the Society of Biodemography ad Social Biology, and others. He has a long-standing interest in enhancing the measurement and collection of population health data, particularly longitudinal data, and has served as the president of the Southern Demographic Association, chair of the Aging and Life Course section of the American Sociological Association, among other appointments.


How Do U.S. States Influence the Health and Longevity of Their Residents?

  • Jennifer Karas Montez
  • Douglas A. Wolf


"Adult Children's Education and Changes to Parents' Physical Health in Mexico" (with Jenjira J. Yahirun and Connnor M. Sheehan). Social Science & Medicine 181 (2017): 93-101.

Assesses whether the education of adult offspring is associated with changes to older parents’ short- and long-term health in Mexico, a rapidly aging context with historically limited institutional support for the elderly. Findings underscore the importance of socio-ecological influences on disability.

"Explaining Inequalities in Women's Mortality between U.S. States" (with Jennifer Karas Montez and Anna Zajacova). Social Science & Medicine 2 (2016): 561-571.

Systematically examines the large inequalities in women's mortality between U.S. states using a multilevel approach, focusing on “fundamental” social determinants of mortality at the individual and state levels as potential explanations.

"Do U.S. States’ Socioeconomic and Policy Contexts Shape Adult Disability?" (with Jennifer Karas Montez and Douglas A. Wolf). Science & Medicine 178 (2017): 115-126.

Shows that states with stronger economic output, more income equality, and long histories of state supplemental Earned Income Tax Credit have much lower disability.

"Life Course Pathways to Racial Disparities in Cognitive Impairment among Older Americans" (with Yan-Lian Yu and Zhenmei Zhang). Journal of Health and Social Behavior 57, no. 2 (2016): 184-199.

Older black Americans have almost a 4 fold greater risk of becoming cognitively impaired compared to whites. This study examines how early life conditions and adult exposures and disease conditions explain the enormous racial divide in cognitive health.

"A Comparison of Educational Differences on Physical Health, Mortality, and Healthy Life Expectancy in Japan and the United States" (with Chi-Tsun Chiu and Yasuhiko Saito). Journal of Aging and Health (2016): 1256-1278.

Shows that education coefficients from physical health and mortality models are similar for both japan and American Populations, and older Japanese have better mortality and health profiles.

"Trends and Group Differences in the Association between Educational Attainment and U.S. Adult Mortality: Implications for Understanding Education’s Causal Influence" (with Robert A. Hummer and Isaac Sasson). Social Science & Medicine 128 (2015): 8-18.

This paper examines the change role of educational attainment in altering life chances. While less educated Americans are facing growing mortality risks, highly educated Americans are experiencing unprecedented improvements in mortality. Why this is so is discussed in this paper, with an emphasis on societal and policy changes that make education an increasingly valuable resource to garner health advantages.

"Does the Hispanic Paradox in Mortality Extend to Disability?" Population Research and Policy Review 33, no. 1 (2014): 81–96.

This paper demonstrates that longer life does not always mean better health.  In the case of Hispanic Americans, the foreign-born are beset by disability rates that result in almost a third of life expectancy at older ages spent being disabled.  White Americans enjoy a much more compressed period of disability.  Black Americans are beset both by a drastically shorter life expectancy and an extended period spent disabled. Mortality and morbidity combine in sometimes unusual ways to influence the lifetime burden of disease.