Pension Reform in Europe: Process and Progress

Pension Reform in Europe: Process and Progress

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Pension Reform in Europe: Process and Progress
World Bank Publications, 2003
By Robert Holzmann, Mitchell A, Orenstein, Michal Rutkowski

Pension reform is an important topic, high on the agendas of most European countries, where countries are profoundly affected by an aging population, the result of lower fertility, and increased life expectancy, changes in family structure, and the effects of globalization. The book presents seven papers on the political economy of European pension reform, where clearly, major reforms are needed, to ensure the sustainability of retirement income systems. However, reform programs will need to combine measures to delay retirement; introduce changes in the benefit structure; and, diversify the sources of retirement income, to better balance individuals’ risks. Subjects address the need to accelerate the European pension reform agenda, and compares the making of pension privatization in Latin America with that in Eastern Europe. Furthermore, subjects look at democracy and structural pension reform in continental Europe, focusing on the aging population, the electoral behavior, and early retirement impacts, on the basis of commitment, and consensus – or the lack thereof – to pension reform. Most interestingly, one of the subjects questions, and further analyzes, the wide differences of social policy models among transition economies, to finalize with a look at the diffusion of pension innovation. These subjects provide insight into the process, and progress of European pension reform, to the benefit of the reform agenda in other regions as well.

Review:
Millennium – Journal of International Studies, Reviewed by Carlo Chiattelli, 2005