IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this article

Why We Need a Pension Revolution

Listed author(s):
  • Keith Ambachtsheer
Registered author(s):

    There is now a broad consensus that workplace pension arrangements around the world are sick and in need of strong medicine. Pension coverage and adequacy are too low, and pension uncertainty too high. The prescr iption of some pension experts is to resurrect the traditional defined-benefit (DB) plan. Others say broad defined-contribution (DC) plan coverage is the cure. This article argues that we have to move from an "either-or" to an "and-and" mindset if we want to seriously improve global workplace pension coverage, adequacy, and certainty. Integrative thinking about these issues leads to pension arrangements that combine the best of both traditional DB and DC plans, and that minimize the impact of their less attractive features. However, redesigning the pension formula is only half the cure. We must also redesign the institutional arrangements through which workplace pensions are delivered. The ideal pension delivery institution has expertise, scale, and acts solely in the best interests of plan participants. There are far too few pension funds around the world today that can meet this triple test. Placed in a Canadian context, the first priority should be to fill the workplace pension gap for the some 4 million Canadian private sector workers without registered pension plans currently facing materially reduced post-work standards of living.

    To our knowledge, this item is not available for download. To find whether it is available, there are three options:
    1. Check below under "Related research" whether another version of this item is available online.
    2. Check on the provider's web page whether it is in fact available.
    3. Perform a search for a similarly titled item that would be available.

    Article provided by University of Toronto Press in its journal Canadian Public Policy.

    Volume (Year): 34 (2008)
    Issue (Month): s1 (November)
    Pages: 7-14

    in new window

    Handle: RePEc:cpp:issued:v:34:y:2008:i:s1:p:7-14
    Contact details of provider: Postal:
    University of Toronto Press Journals Division 5201 Dufferin Street Toronto, Ontario, Canada M3H 5T8

    Web page:

    Order Information: Web: Email:

    References listed on IDEAS
    Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

    in new window

    1. Merton, Robert C., 1971. "Optimum consumption and portfolio rules in a continuous-time model," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 3(4), pages 373-413, December.
    2. Mitchell, Olivia S. & Utkus, Stephen P. (ed.), 2004. "Pension Design and Structure: New Lessons from Behavioral Finance," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199273393.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cpp:issued:v:34:y:2008:i:s1:p:7-14. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Prof. Werner Antweiler)

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.