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The Politics of Age

Basic Pension Systems in a Comparative and Historical Perspective

Jörn Henrik Petersen and Klaus Petersen

Financially and politically, old age pensions are one of the cornerstones of modern welfare states, with a long history behind them. Pension systems and pension reforms have not only commanded the special attention of welfare researchers. Over the past few years, politicians throughout most of Europe have discovered that pension reforms can be both a difficult and a hazardous venture. In this book a number of researchers analyse the historical political development of European pension systems as well as present-day political and economic challenges. The authors comprise economists, political scientists and historians. The multi-disciplinary approach of the book combined with its comparative and historical perspective make possible a finely graded presentation of public pension systems and the challenges facing them.
Contents: Jørn Henrik Petersen/Klaus Petersen: Introduction – Klaus Petersen/Jørn Henrik Petersen: The Coalition of the Willing and the Breakthrough of the Welfare State - the Political History of the Danish People’s Pension – Dorottya Szikra: From Bismarck to the New Pension Orthodoxy: The Historical Development of the Pension System in Hungary – Pat Thane: Women and the Pensions System: the Case of Britain – Jørn Henrik Petersen: The ‘Benefit Formula’ in Danish Old Age Pensions – Winfried Schmähl: Proposals for Introducing a Public ‘Basic Pension’ in Germany - An Issue for two Centuries – Karl Hinrichs: Pension Reforms in Europe: Convergence of Old-Age Security Systems? – Einar Overbye: Pensions Can be Cut – Torben M. Andersen: Increasing Longevity and the Welfare State – Urban Lundberg: The Democratic Deficit of Pension Reform: The Case of Sweden.