This timely book investigates the growth of the early retirement trend and its varying spread among different groups of older workers in fourteen modern societies. It argues for a differentiated political approach to reverse early retirement, which relies on both pension and employability policies for older workers.
Examining the early retirement trend virtually all modern societies have been faced with since the onset of the globalization process in the 1970s and 1980s, this book provides a thorough analysis of older workers' late careers and their retirement transitions, as well as explaining why this trend has developed differently between nations. To promote an effective reversal of the early retirement trend, national policymakers are advised not to concentrate their efforts exclusively on reducing the financial incentives for an early exit still present in most national pension systems. In addition, it is also recommended that they invest in the employability of older workers, implying a thorough reconsideration of the design of education and labor market policies.
Dirk Hofacker presents a unique and comprehensive synthesis of theories describing and explaining the trend towards early retirement, and critically discusses their comparative advantages and shortcomings. Researchers and students of sociology, economics, gerontology, demography and comparative welfare states should not be without this book and policymakers and practitioners dealing with labor market policies will find it invaluable.
Dirk Hofacker, Universitat Duisburg-Essen, Germany