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Rethinking Pension Reform : Ten Myths about Social Security Systems

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  • Börsch-Supan, Axel

Abstract

Before coming to substance, a brief introductory remark: Although the paper claims to be deliberately provocative, I found only one really provocative statement in it, on the bottom of the first page, namely that the paper is "nuanced". "Nuanced" is certainly a matter of perspective. The paper's narrow-minded view may be helpful for a perspective centering on the United Kingdom or the United States where the development has gone far in the direction of private defined contribution (DC) plans. However, this is not the world, and this a World Bank conference. In fact, there are many parts of the world - actually a majority of the countries - which have only one monolithic public defined benefit (DB) system, and this paper does little to do justice to the many attempts of starting small moves towards more balanced systems which combine elements of public defined benefit and private defined contribution (DC) plans. A nuanced view would take at least a bit of a glimpse on the problems of those countries. I say this with quite a bit of frustration as a European, specifically as a German, where in spite of all kinds of serious troubles ahead the reform towards a more balanced system has been stalled over and again.

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  • Börsch-Supan, Axel, 2000. "Rethinking Pension Reform : Ten Myths about Social Security Systems," Discussion Papers 582, Institut fuer Volkswirtschaftslehre und Statistik, Abteilung fuer Volkswirtschaftslehre.
  • Handle: RePEc:mnh:vpaper:1030
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    File URL: https://ub-madoc.bib.uni-mannheim.de/1030/1/582.pdf
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    1. Brunner, Johann K., 1993. "Redistribution and the efficiency of the pay-as-you-go pension system," Discussion Papers, Series I 265, University of Konstanz, Department of Economics.
    2. Casey B. Mulligan & Xavier Sala-i-Martin, 1999. "Social security in theory and practice (I): Facts and political theories," Economics Working Papers 384, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
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