The old-age dependency ratio – the ratio of the population aged 65 and over to the population aged 15-64 – is projected to increase significantly in many countries, reflecting diminishing fertility rates and increasing longevity in these countries. The ratios in Japan, Spain, Italy and Greece are expected to grow to over 60% in 2050 according to OECD projections, from around 25% in these countries in 2000. This rapid aging of the population poses a significant challenge for societies, including rising deficits in public pension accounts. Many countries aim to respond in part by increasing the employment rate of groups of people who have sometimes been marginally attached to the labor market, such as youth, women with children, and the elderly, to help address this challenge.
The IZA Journal of Labor Policy and the RIETI join forces to present research that will help policymakers tackle the challenge of increasing employment to help counter the economic effects of population aging.