Data Sets

The Max Planck Institute for Human Development provides various data for reuse for defined target groups. The access conditions differ depending on the data set.

Parts of the data described below can be made available if the corresponding requirements are met.

Berlin Age Study (BASE)

The Berlin Age Study is a multidisciplinary study of elderly people from age 70 to over 100 years old who lived in the former western part of Berlin. The main study (1990-1993) examined a core sample of 516 individuals in 14 sessions with regard to their mental and physical health, their intellectual performance, their psychological well-being, and their social and economic situation. Since then, the study has been continued as a longitudinal study by examining survivors seven times.

Further information on the BASE data and how to use them can be found on the page Berlin Aging Study (BASE), on the project page and in the following publication:

Lindenberger, U., Smith, J., Mayer, K. U., & Baltes, P. B. (Eds.). (2010). Die Berliner Altersstudie (3rd ext. ed.). Akademie Verlag.

Berlin Age Study II (BASE-II)

The Berlin Age Study II continues the Berlin Age Study (BASE). The follow-up study BASE-II examines the physical, mental, and social conditions that contribute to successful ageing. A total of 2,200 Berliners are examined, of whom 1,600 are between 60 and 80 years old and–as a comparison group–600 between 20 and 35 years. The first wave of research started in 2009 and ended in 2015. BASE-II is designed as a longitudinal study: The participants are examined repeatedly in order to determine changes.

Further information on the BASE-II data and how to use them can be found on the page Berlin Aging Study II (BASE-II), on the project page and in the following publication:

Bertram, L., Böckenhoff, A., Demuth, I., Düzel, S., Eckhardt, R., Li, S.-C., Lindenberger, U., Pawelec, G., Siedler, T., Wagner, G. G., & Steinhagen-Thiessen, E. (2014). Cohort Profile: The Berlin Aging Study II (BASE-II). International Journal of Epidemiology, 43(3), 703–712.


In the COGITO study 101 individuals aged 20 to 31 and 103 individuals aged 65 to 80 worked on twelve different tasks on 100 different days. The tasks were used to test the speed of perception, memory, and working memory. The repetition of the tasks on 100 days made it possible to determine the learning progress along with the daily performance fluctuations and to compare them between the age groups.

Further information on the COGITO data and the possibilities of using these data can be found on the COGITO site and in the following publication:

Schmiedek, F., Lövdén, M., & Lindenberger, U. (2010). Hundred days of cognitive training enhance broad cognitive abilities in adulthood: Findings from the COGITO study. Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience, 2, Article 27.

FACES Lifespan Database of Facial Expressions

FACES goes back to a project that investigated processes that contribute to the understanding of emotional poses. The systematic investigation of this question was made possible by the development of a large new database, the FACES Lifespan Database of Facial Expressions, which for the first time covers a wide age range of 171 women and men with different facial expressions. In 2018, morphed videos (dynamic FACES) based on the original FACES images and so-called "scrambled FACES", which can be used as control stimuli, were added.

Further information on the FACES database and the possibilities of using the FACES objects can be found on the project page and in the following publication:

Ebner, N. C., Riediger, M., & Lindenberger, U. (2010). FACES - A database of facial expressions in young, middle-aged, and older women and men: Development and validation. Behavior Research Methods, 42(1), 351–362.
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