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Responding to Key Well-being Challenges in Austria

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Author Info

  • Rauf Gönenç
  • Oliver Röhn
  • Christian Beer
  • Andreas Wörgötter

Abstract

Important challenges for the future of Austrian well-being arise from demographic and environmental trends. The ageing of the population calls for a fair balance between life-time pension contributions and entitlements, drawing on the recent pension reform. Such progress will allow Austrians to make more informed choices between the length of their work and contribution periods and retirement length and income according to their preferences, without threatening fiscal sustainability. With female labour force participation rising, family policies should help reconcile equality of opportunity within families by promoting the availability, affordability and quality of support services. A growing share of immigrant groups with low human capital calls for remedial policies to preserve social cohesion. Environmental pressures arise from urban sprawl and the strong expansion of road transport. Turning around these trends will require more appropriate pricing of the externalities and better regional development policies to foster denser settlements that are well connected to public transport. This entails a need to strengthen coordination between different government layers and better integration of regional development with transport and housing policies. This Working Paper relates to the 2013 OECD Economic Survey of Austria (http://www.oecd.org/eco/surveys/austria-2013.htm). Bien-être en Autriche : les grands défis Le bien-être des Autrichiens va se heurter à l’avenir à des défis importants liés aux tendances démographiques et environnementales. Le vieillissement de la population nécessite un juste équilibre entre les cotisations et les droits à pension, sur la base de la réforme récente du régime de retraite. Ces progrès vont permettre aux Autrichiens de faire des choix plus éclairés entre la durée de leur vie active et de leurs cotisations et celle de leur retraite ainsi que leurs revenus en fonction de leurs préférences, sans pour autant peser sur la viabilité des finances publiques. Face à l’augmentation du taux d’activité des femmes, les politiques familiales devraient contribuer à l’égalité des chances au sein des familles et favoriser des services de soutien accessibles, abordables et efficaces. La proportion grandissante des groupes immigrés ayant un faible niveau de capital humain exige la mise en place de mesures correctives afin de préserver la cohésion sociale. Les pressions pesant sur l’environnement sont causées par l’étalement urbain et l’expansion rapide du transport routier. Pour contrer ces évolutions, il faudra mettre en place une tarification plus appropriée des externalités et de meilleures politiques de développement régional afin de promouvoir des habitats plus denses et bien desservis par les transports publics. Il faut pour cela renforcer la coordination entre les différents niveaux d’administration et mieux intégrer les politiques de développement régional, de transport et de logement. Ce Document de travail se rapporte à l’Étude économique de l’OCDE de l’Autriche, 2013 (http://www.oecd.org/eco/surveys/austria-2013.htm).

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by OECD Publishing in its series OECD Economics Department Working Papers with number 1080.

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Date of creation: 05 Aug 2013
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Handle: RePEc:oec:ecoaaa:1080-en

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Keywords: ageing; environment; transport; immigration; family; Austria; well-being; urban sprawl; famille; Autriche; démographie; bien-être; étalement urbain; immigration; environnement; transport; vieillissement;

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