IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/tut/cccrwp/2012-04-ccr.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

When the State Mirrors the Family: The Design of Pension Systems

Author

Listed:
  • Vincenzo Galasso

    (Università della Svizzera Italiana, Dondena, IGIER and CEPR, Switzerland)

  • Paola Profeta

    (Econpubblica and Dondena, Università Bocconi, Italy)

Abstract

We study how the prevailing internal organization of the family affected the initial design of pension systems. Our theoretical framework predicts that, in society with weak family ties, pensions systems were introduced to act as a safety net, while in societies with strong ties they replicate the tight link between generations by providing generous benefits. Using a historical classification of family ties, we show that in societies dominated by (weak ties) absolute nuclear families (f.i. Anglo-Saxon countries), safety net pension systems emerged; and viceversa in societies dominated by strong families. These results are robust to controlling for alternative legal, religious, and political explanations. Evidence on individual data confirm these findings: US citizens whose ancestors came from countries featuring strong ties (communitarian or egalitarian nuclear) families prefer to rely on the government as a provider of old age security through generous retirement benefits.

Suggested Citation

  • Vincenzo Galasso & Paola Profeta, 2012. "When the State Mirrors the Family: The Design of Pension Systems," Economics Working Paper from Condorcet Center for political Economy at CREM-CNRS 2012-04-ccr, Condorcet Center for political Economy.
  • Handle: RePEc:tut:cccrwp:2012-04-ccr
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://ged.univ-rennes1.fr/nuxeo/site/esupversions/dddb6634-7547-4aa7-998a-23da930287ee
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. repec:crr:crrwps:2004-07 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Cutler, David & Johnson, Richard, 2004. "The Birth and Growth of the Social Insurance State: Explaining Old-Age and Medical Insurance Across Countries," Scholarly Articles 2643658, Harvard University Department of Economics.
    3. Stefan Traub & Tim Krieger, 2008. "Back to Bismarck? Shifting Preferences for Intragenerational Redistribution in OECD Pension Systems," LIS Working papers 485, LIS Cross-National Data Center in Luxembourg.
    4. Alberto Alesina & Paola Giuliano, 2010. "The power of the family," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 15(2), pages 93-125, June.
    5. Marko Koethenbuerger & Panu Poutvaara & Paola Profeta, 2008. "Why are more redistributive social security systems smaller? A median voter approach," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 60(2), pages 275-292, April.
    6. Alberto Alesina & Yann Algan & Pierre Cahuc & Paola Giuliano, 2015. "Family Values And The Regulation Of Labor," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 13(4), pages 599-630, August.
    7. Gilles Duranton & Andres Rodríguez-Pose & Richard Sandall, 2009. "Family Types and the Persistence of Regional Disparities in Europe," Economic Geography, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 85(1), pages 23-47, January.
    8. Alessandra Fogli & Raquel Fernandez, 2009. "Culture: An Empirical Investigation of Beliefs, Work, and Fertility," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 1(1), pages 146-177, January.
    9. Yann Algan & Pierre Cahuc, 2005. "The Roots of Low European Employment: Family Culture?," NBER Chapters, in: NBER International Seminar on Macroeconomics 2005, pages 65-109, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. Licht, Amir N. & Goldschmidt, Chanan & Schwartz, Shalom H., 2007. "Culture rules: The foundations of the rule of law and other norms of governance," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(4), pages 659-688, December.
    11. David M. Cutler & Richard Johnson, 2004. "The Birth and Growth of the Social Insurance State: Explaining Old Age and Medical Insurance Across Countries," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 120(1_2), pages 87-121, July.
    12. Elizabeth Caucutt & Thomas Cooley & Nezih Guner, 2013. "The farm, the city, and the emergence of social security," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 18(1), pages 1-32, March.
    13. Pinotti Paolo, 2009. "Financial Development and Pay-As-You-Go Social Security," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 9(1), pages 1-21, March.
    14. Vincenzo Galasso & Roberta Gatti & Paola Profeta, 2009. "Investing for the old age: pensions, children and savings," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 16(4), pages 538-559, August.
    15. J. Ignacio Conde-Ruiz & Paola Profeta, 2007. "The Redistributive Design of Social Security Systems," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 117(520), pages 686-712, April.
    16. Acemoglu,Daron & Robinson,James A., 2009. "Economic Origins of Dictatorship and Democracy," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521671422, May.
    17. Vincenzo Galasso & Paola Profeta, 2004. "Lessons for an ageing society: the political sustainability of social security systems [‘Assessing dynamic efficiency: theory and evidence’]," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 19(38), pages 64-115.
    18. Disney, Richard, 2007. "Population ageing and the size of the welfare state: Is there a puzzle to explain?," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 23(2), pages 542-553, June.
    19. Lindert Peter H., 1994. "The Rise of Social Spending, 1880-1930," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 1-37, January.
    20. Lipset, Seymour Martin, 1959. "Some Social Requisites of Democracy: Economic Development and Political Legitimacy1," American Political Science Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 53(1), pages 69-105, March.
    21. Vincenzo Galasso, 2008. "The Political Future of Social Security in Aging Societies," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 026257246x, February.
    22. Marko Köthenbürger & Panu Poutvaara & Paola Profeta, 2005. "Why are More Redistributive Social Security Systems Smaller? A Median Voter Approach," CESifo Working Paper Series 1397, CESifo.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Vincenzo Galasso & Paola Profeta, 2013. "From Family Culture to Welfare State Design," CHILD Working Papers Series 14, Centre for Household, Income, Labour and Demographic Economics (CHILD) - CCA.
    2. Aggarwal, Raj & Goodell, John W., 2013. "Political-economy of pension plans: Impact of institutions, gender, and culture," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 37(6), pages 1860-1879.
    3. Alesina, Alberto & Giuliano, Paola, 2014. "Family Ties," Handbook of Economic Growth, in: Philippe Aghion & Steven Durlauf (ed.), Handbook of Economic Growth, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 4, pages 177-215, Elsevier.
    4. Rivera-Rozo, J.A. (Jairo) & García-Huitrón, M.E. (Manuel) & Steenbeek, O.W. (Onno) & van der Lecq, S.G. (Fieke), 2018. "National culture and the configuration of public pensions," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(2), pages 457-479.
    5. Ryo Arawatari & Tetsuo Ono, 2008. "Aging, Inequality and Social Security," Discussion Papers in Economics and Business 08-19, Osaka University, Graduate School of Economics.
    6. Perotti, Enrico & Schwienbacher, Armin, 2009. "The political origin of pension funding," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 18(3), pages 384-404, July.
    7. Stefan Traub & Tim Krieger, 2009. "Wie hat sich die intragenerationale Umverteilung in der staatlichen Säule des Rentensystems verändert? Ein internationaler Vergleich auf Basis von LIS-Daten," LIS Working papers 520, LIS Cross-National Data Center in Luxembourg.
    8. Ryo Arawatari & Tetsuo Ono, 2011. "Retirement and social security: the roles of self-fulfilling expectations and educational investments," Economics of Governance, Springer, vol. 12(4), pages 353-383, December.
    9. Marko Koethenbuerger & Panu Poutvaara & Paola Profeta, 2008. "Why are more redistributive social security systems smaller? A median voter approach," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 60(2), pages 275-292, April.
    10. Casamatta, G. & Batté, L., 2016. "The Political Economy of Population Aging," Handbook of the Economics of Population Aging, in: Piggott, John & Woodland, Alan (ed.), Handbook of the Economics of Population Aging, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 0, pages 381-444, Elsevier.
    11. J. Ignacio Conde-Ruiz & Paola Profeta, 2007. "The Redistributive Design of Social Security Systems," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 117(520), pages 686-712, April.
    12. Tim Krieger & Thomas Lange, 2012. "Education, Life Expectancy and Pension Reform," Hacienda Pública Española / Review of Public Economics, IEF, vol. 202(3), pages 31-55, September.
    13. Giavazzi, Francesco & Schiantarelli, Fabio & Serafinelli, Michel, 2009. "Culture, Policies and Labor Market Outcomes," IZA Discussion Papers 4558, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    14. Ryo Arawatari & Tetsuo Ono, 2011. "Old-age Social Security vs. Forward Intergenerational Public Goods Provision," Discussion Papers in Economics and Business 11-26-Rev.2, Osaka University, Graduate School of Economics, revised Aug 2013.
    15. Ashraf, Quamrul & Galor, Oded, 2007. "Cultural Assimilation, Cultural Diffusion and the Origin of the Wealth of Nations," CEPR Discussion Papers 6444, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    16. Cottier, Lionel, 2018. "Culture, financial constraints, and retirement decision," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(C), pages 128-145.
    17. Astghik Mavisakalyan, 2015. "Gender in Language and Gender in Employment," Oxford Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 43(4), pages 403-424, December.
    18. Paola Profeta & Simona Scabrosetti, 2010. "The Political Economy of Taxation," Books, Edward Elgar Publishing, number 13258.
    19. Francesco Giavazzi & Ivan Petkov & Fabio Schiantarelli, 2019. "Culture: persistence and evolution," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 24(2), pages 117-154, June.
    20. Alberto Alesina & Yann Algan & Pierre Cahuc & Paola Giuliano, 2015. "Family Values And The Regulation Of Labor," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 13(4), pages 599-630, August.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    culture; family ties; pension design;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • Z10 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - General
    • Z13 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Economic Sociology; Economic Anthropology; Language; Social and Economic Stratification
    • N30 - Economic History - - Labor and Consumers, Demography, Education, Health, Welfare, Income, Wealth, Religion, and Philanthropy - - - General, International, or Comparative
    • H10 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government - - - General
    • H55 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Social Security and Public Pensions

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:tut:cccrwp:2012-04-ccr. 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: . General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/cccrmfr.html .

    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 CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: GERMAIN Lucie (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/cccrmfr.html .

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

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.