Efficiency of Pension Reforms

For the German pension commission that is tasked with the development of a sustainable pension system for 2025 and after, insights from SHARE-based research play an important role. Being a member of the commission, Managing Director Axel Börsch-Supan uses SHARE data as a valuable source of empiric evidence for the commission in the face of the often times heated public debate. Among other contributions, SHARE data was used to examine the efficiency of three pension reforms in Germany: one that aimed to improve how well work disability and receipt of disability insurance match, one with the goal to offer less healthy individuals a pathway to early retirement after having worked a long time in arduous jobs, and one that would provide households in risk of poverty a supplemental pension benefit[1]. Utilizing the linkage of SHARE survey data with official administrative records of the German statutory pension, the study is able to demonstrate that all these reforms miss their targets. Since similar reforms are debated in many other European countries as well, these case studies may serve as examples how to better target public pension policies even beyond Germany.