Economic Reform and Mortality in the Former Soviet Union: a Study of the Suicide Epidemic in the 1990s

Male suicide rates in Russia, Belarus, Ukraine, & the Baltic countries increased substantially in the early 1990s. Fixed effects regressions across 22 transition economies indicate male suicide rates were highly sensitive to the state of the macroeconomy. Evidence also indicates the general adult male mortality crisis in the region had a feedback effect on suicide […]

Suicide in the Baltic Countries and in the Former Republics of the USSR

Published in “The Suicidal Process: Challenges for Treatment and Prevention”

Suicide in Central and Eastern Europe: Trends, Causal Factors, Risk and Protective Constellations

Published in “Suicide Risk & Protective Factors in the New Millennium,” ed. by O T Grad

The Impact of the Reunification of Germany on the Suicide Rate

The central finding of this paper is that the suicide rate in East Germany declined by about 1/3 after the reunification of Germany. The suicide rate in West Germany declined by 1/4. Possibly the political liberation and the drop in fatalistic suicide, accounts for this decline in suicide rates.

Suicide in the Baltic Countries and in the Former Republics of the USSR

This study examined suicide rates in different regions of the former USSR. The periods studied were 1922-35 & 1965-68 for Estonia, 1968-90 for the 3 Baltic states, & 1984-90 for all 15 republics. The influence of sociopolitical & economic factors on suicide trends was explored. Suicide rates were found to vary widely between the republics […]

Suicide in Lithuania

Data on the rate of suicide during 1924-1939 & 1962-1993 are presented. In pre-war independent Lithuania, the suicide rate was 5-10/100,000 population. During Soviet occupation the rate constantly increased. Changes toward a more democratic society caused the rate to drop, but by 1993 it had again increased to 42.0/100,000. Lithuania’s suicide rate is compared to […]

Suicides in the Baltic Countries, 1968-90

Trends in suicide in Estonia, Latvia & Lithuania were studied for the years 1968-1990. Suicide rates declined sharply from 1986, the year marking the onset of turbulent social change. From 1968-1984, the male suicide rate (per 100,000) was 55.7 in Estonia, 52.5 in Latvia & 51.7 in Lithuania. Female suicide rates were 14.3, 14.3 & […]

Increase in Suicide Among men in the Baltic Countries

In this letter to the editor, Wasserman & Varnik discuss suicide trends in the Baltic countries during 1967-1993 & how these trends can be divided into 3 periods in accordance with the sociopolitical situation. In the third period, 1991-1992, the social structure was changing from socialism to a market economy. The suicide rate for males […]


This overview reports on the activities of the Research Group on “Psychological crisis & suicide” at Vilnius University since the group was formed following the 16th IASP (International Association of Suicide Prevention) Congress in Hamburg. It notes some of the challenges facing researchers since liberation from Soviet occupation. Lithuania suicide rates have increased from 27.5/100,000 […]