Journal of
Public Health and Epidemiology

  • Abbreviation: J. Public Health Epidemiol.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2141-2316
  • DOI: 10.5897/JPHE
  • Start Year: 2009
  • Published Articles: 609

Full Length Research Paper

Which suicides increase during the economic crisis? A commentary and a proposal

John E. Berg
  • John E. Berg
  • Faculty of Health Sciences, Oslo and Akershus University College, Pilestredet 48, 0130 Oslo, Norway.
  • Google Scholar

  •  Received: 23 October 2015
  •  Accepted: 04 January 2016
  •  Published: 31 May 2016


Both suicide and economic crisis as terms are defined differently in scientific studies. Suicides before the crisis have several causes, and the proportion of such suicides during a crisis is unknown. Calculating these suicides as part of the purported economic crisis induced suicides may exaggerate the increase in the suicide rate. Suicide statistics is not reliable in all countries. Several years may pass before the economic crisis to make people conclude with a wish to and an act of committing suicide. People referred to hospitals before the crisis, during the crisis and some years after. The crisis could be characterized and compared according to objective and individually felt relation to deteriorating finances. The aim of the study is to demonstrate the complexity of the concept of suicide related to the economic crisis in Europe in 2007 to 2008 and propose a way to research this complexity.

Key words: Suicide, economic crisis, unemployment.