The purpose is to build a database to study whether mobile phone use is connected with health risks.


There is no biological hypothesis suggesting that the actual type of electromagnetic fields poses risks to health. However, the technology has rapidly penetrated the population and if some aspect of mobile telephony that could lead to human health risks is ignored it might have huge public health impact. Since considerable parts of the public and decision makers are concerned it is also important to exclude health risks if they do not exist. There is already a substantial amount of research in this area and some health risks can be excluded with reasonable certainty. However, potentially important issues have not been studied or have been studied with methodology that leaves question marks. Existing studies use historical information on mobile phone use and on other exposures. Existing studies are also designed such that they are particularly sensitive to non-participation. This leads to information bias and prevents firm conclusions. Cosmos has a prospective design and avoids these problems.


Cosmos is an international collaboration including five centers with a total of 250,000 subjects who will be followed for up to 25 years. Information will be obtained from repeated questionnaires, repeated downloads from traffic operators, and health registries. Outcomes will include brain tumors, neurodegenerative disease, cognitive effects, headache, and sleeping problems.


  • Swedish Council for Working life and Social research
  • The Swedish Research Council
  • AFA Insurance
  • Vinnova (Vinnova administers a grant from Telenor, TeliaSonera and Sony Ericsson, and acts as a firewall according to a contract that guarantees the independence and autonomy of the research.)


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Anders Ahlbom

Professor Emeritus/Emerita
Content reviewer:
Anna Persson