Researchers at the Higher School of Economics have posted the results of a recent study that shows the difference in life expectancy between those living in large Russian cities and those in other regions.
The study shows that people living in Moscow and St. Petersburg live significantly longer than those people living in other regions of Russia. In 2014, women in Moscow were found to live on average 8.3 years longer and men 5.3 years longer. In St. Petersburg, the average life expectancy was greater by 4.3 years for women and by 2.6 for men.
Researchers say the tendency to live longer in cities is a fairly recent occurrence, starting in the mid-1990s. Previously, life expectancy was about the same for those in large cities compared to other regions. However, beginning in the mid-1990s, it was found those in larger cities were living longer than the average of individuals not in big cities.
Why is this happening? Researchers say the reason is due to statistical bias due to the high migration rates in these locations. However, such a large difference is not due to bias alone. Moscow and St. Petersburg differ from other regions in Russia in terms of average level of education and income of those that live there. Also, contributing is the quality and access to medical care, with large amounts of modern and high-tech medical equipment being concentrated in both Moscow and St. Petersburg.
The full research can be found in the European Journal of Population.