Less is More? 20 years of changing minimum income protection for old Europe’s elderly
AbstractOver the past two decades, pension reforms have been at the top of the agenda of social policy makers in Europe. In many countries, these reforms have resulted in less generous public pensions. At the same time, minimum income protection for the elderly has received attention from policy makers, but much less so from social policy researchers. Therefore, in this paper, I explore how benefit levels of non-contributory minimum income schemes for the elderly have evolved between 1990 and 2009 in 13 ‘old’ EU member states. Building on two new cross-national and cross-temporary comparable datasets on minimum income protection in Europe, it is shown that over the past 20 years the erosion of the principal safety net of last resort for elderly persons has been limited. Moreover, in a substantial number of European countries a deliberate policy of large increases in minimum income benefits has been pursued, leading to a remarkable convergence of relative benefit levels.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Herman Deleeck Centre for Social Policy, University of Antwerp in its series Working Papers with number 1207.
Date of creation: Aug 2012
Date of revision:
basic pension; benefit level; conditional basic pension; convergence; elderly; European Union; minimum benefit; minimum income protection; minimum pension; social assistance; social pension;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- H55 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Social Security and Public Pensions
- I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs
- J26 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Retirement; Retirement Policies
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-AGE-2012-09-09 (Economics of Ageing)
- NEP-ALL-2012-09-09 (All new papers)
- NEP-EUR-2012-09-09 (Microeconomic European Issues)
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- Nicolas Sirven, 2012. "On the Socio-Economic Determinants of Frailty: Findings from Panel and Retrospective Data from SHARE," Working Papers DT52, IRDES institut for research and information in health economics, revised Dec 2012.
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