International Variation in Ageing and Economic Dependency: A Cohort Perspective

Elke Loichinger, Vegard Skirbekk


Within this analysis of demographic and economic dependency ratios for 45 countries around the world, we reiterate the importance of age- and gender-specific employment levels as well as their determinants when discussing the economic challenges associated with population ageing. Building upon existing research on economic dependency, we portray and discuss cohort variation in employment and its possible effect on the challenges of population ageing, focusing on the implications of high youth unemployment, the role of changes in female employment and the evolution of retirement patterns across cohorts. The insights from our analysis reaffirm findings elsewhere that younger populations may not be as well off in the light of demographic change as an analysis of their demographic structure alone would suggest and stress the importance of considering the cohort dimension of employment in this discussion.


Dependency; Population ageing; Economic dependency; Cohorts

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