International Variation in Ageing and Economic Dependency: A Cohort Perspective

Elke Loichinger, Wittgenstein Centre (IIASA, VID/ÖAW, WU)
Vegard Skirbekk, International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)

We present evidence on variation in demographic and economic dependency ratios for 45 countries. We argue that age- and gender-specific employment levels and the factors that cause variation in employment determine economic and financial challenges associated with population ageing to a greater extent than changes in the demographic composition per se. We also discuss cohort variation in employment and its possible effect on the challenges of population ageing, focusing on the implications of high youth unemployment, low female employment and the evolution of retirement patterns across cohorts. Taking a cohort perspective allows us to identify past employment patterns that lead us to conclude that several though chronologically younger populations might not be as well off as the analysis of their demographic structure alone would suggest.

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Presented in Session 223: Measurement and Projections of Population Aging