Chapter

Occupational Pensions and the Search for Security

Noel Whiteside

in Britain's Pensions Crisis

Published by British Academy

Published in print October 2006 | ISBN: 9780197263853
Published online February 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191734281 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5871/bacad/9780197263853.003.0008

Series: British Academy Occasional Papers

Occupational Pensions and the Search for Security

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Occupational pensions, linking previous earnings to pensioner income, have long been understood as an essential supplement to a state pension in retirement, particularly in Britain where state provision as of right is the lowest in the western world. Since World War II, policy initiatives in Britain have made sporadic efforts to increase the coverage of occupational or personal pension supplements. The Turner Commission's proposals represent the most recent in a long line of reports and recommendations designed to achieve this end. In 1942, William Beveridge noted that insecure employment or reduced earnings damages the commitment of the poorest to long-term savings and raises the cost of collecting voluntary contributions. Britain has made little progress for over half a century. This chapter makes a short evaluation of the role occupational (or earnings-related) pension provision has made to policy during this period, contrasting the British experience with those of other countries in continental Europe and Scandinavia. It also addresses the issue of pension security and whether past and present policy strategies in Britain have paid it sufficient regard.

Keywords: Britain; occupational pensions; income; Europe; Scandinavia; savings; retirement; employment; policy; pension security

Chapter.  5722 words. 

Subjects: Political Theory

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