Extending the tail end of working lives: How policies shape labour market participation and retirement of older workers
Kuitto, Kati; Helmdag, Jan (2016-09)
09 / 2016
Julkaisun pysyvä osoite on
Manuscript version September 2016
In the last two decades, public pension systems have been geared towards extending working lives and postponing retirement, thus activating older workers in most of the advanced welfare states. When materialized, those outcomes contribute to the sustainability of pension schemes and concurrently, to adequate old age incomes in the face of demographic ageing. In this paper, a comparative time-series—cross-section analysis is performed in order to assess the effects of macro-level institutional pull, push, and retention factors on effective retirement age, cohort-adjusted labour market exit rates, and employment ratio of older workers in 15 OECD countries from 1992 to 2010. The results show that policies matter: pension system parameters setting incentives for working longer are significant determinants of retirement age and labour market participation of elderly. However, effects of push and pull factors are in part different for women and men. Most notably, though, the overall orientation of social policies over the life course matters: a greater weight of social investment in human capital and public services clearly supports the extension of working live even at its tail end. Our analysis thus provides evidence on the importance of the institutional social policy design over the whole life course in extending working lives and postponing retirement.
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