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Sustainable, adequate and safe pensions: financial architecture, social justice and governance
The provision of replacement incomes (pensions) for old people is among one of the main achievements of modern advanced economies. Historically, the State and other entities successfully organized the provision of public pensions. There is no doubt that this contributed to the wellbeing of elderly citizens1. It is also likely to have played a significant role in the reduction of old-age poverty. However, public pension budgets are now increasingly challenged by demographic and economic developments, namely rapid population ageing combined with slow(er) economic growth. Hence, policy makers around the world are confronted with the challenging task of reforming existing pension systems. This interdisciplinary research project aims at critically assessing the key conditions that a public pension system should fulfil to be successfully reformed. Our hypothesis is that there are three such conditions: i)financial sustainability, ii) social adequacy and iii) safe governance. Hence, the ‘SAS’ acronym. Our goal is to identify the pension architecture that is the most likely to generate SAS pensions. That researchwill rest on diverse approaches (conceptual,numerical, empirical and normative) to assess the properties of various possible pension architectures, through the prism of SAS criteria.