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Beveridge not Bismarck! European lessons for men’s and women’s pensions in Germany

Beveridge not Bismarck! European lessons for men’s and women’s pensions in Germany
Beveridge not Bismarck! European lessons for men’s and women’s pensions in Germany
Paid employment determines pension levels, for both women and men. In those European countries in which women have been integrated into the labour market at an early stage their protection in old age is higher today for that reason alone. Germany lags behind in this respect. Gender-specific differences in the employment participation of the low educated are greater than those between the educated, everywhere. The differences are more substantial in Germany than in many other European countries. A fair pension policy that can prevent poverty thus begins in the labour market. It has to improve employment opportunities for women and men of all social classes. The pension systems of countries in which gender relations were modernised early correspond to the »Beveridge model«: a universal basic pension, supplemented with mandatory occupational pensions, prevents old-age poverty more effectively and enables women to be more independent. The pension systems of countries in which gender relations were modernised later are income- and contribution-dependent. These "Bismarck countries" prevent poverty less effectively and maintain a legacy of dependence. Despite retrenchment, women in Beveridge countries are better protected against poverty. The statutory pension in Germany, however, has fallen to the lowest level among the countries investigated in this paper, affecting the low educated in particular. The Beveridge countries show that preventing poverty entails a statutory minimum pension and mandatory occupational pensions. German social policy should learn from this.
978-3-86498-793-9
Friedrich Ebert Foundation
Meyer, Traute
ee469bf0-ab32-43ac-9f25-1261c24123fe
Meyer, Traute
ee469bf0-ab32-43ac-9f25-1261c24123fe

Meyer, Traute (2014) Beveridge not Bismarck! European lessons for men’s and women’s pensions in Germany (International Policy Analysis) Berlin, DE. Friedrich Ebert Foundation 29pp.

Record type: Monograph (Discussion Paper)

Abstract

Paid employment determines pension levels, for both women and men. In those European countries in which women have been integrated into the labour market at an early stage their protection in old age is higher today for that reason alone. Germany lags behind in this respect. Gender-specific differences in the employment participation of the low educated are greater than those between the educated, everywhere. The differences are more substantial in Germany than in many other European countries. A fair pension policy that can prevent poverty thus begins in the labour market. It has to improve employment opportunities for women and men of all social classes. The pension systems of countries in which gender relations were modernised early correspond to the »Beveridge model«: a universal basic pension, supplemented with mandatory occupational pensions, prevents old-age poverty more effectively and enables women to be more independent. The pension systems of countries in which gender relations were modernised later are income- and contribution-dependent. These "Bismarck countries" prevent poverty less effectively and maintain a legacy of dependence. Despite retrenchment, women in Beveridge countries are better protected against poverty. The statutory pension in Germany, however, has fallen to the lowest level among the countries investigated in this paper, affecting the low educated in particular. The Beveridge countries show that preventing poverty entails a statutory minimum pension and mandatory occupational pensions. German social policy should learn from this.

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Published date: February 2014
Organisations: Sociology, Social Policy & Criminology

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 365025
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/365025
ISBN: 978-3-86498-793-9
PURE UUID: f2797e3c-f7f5-48b3-8391-ceedc8088951
ORCID for Traute Meyer: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0003-0767-8351

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 21 May 2014 09:40
Last modified: 30 Jan 2020 01:30

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