Alessandro Cigno

Alessandro Cigno is Professor of Economics at the University of Florence and coauthor of The Economics of Child Labor.

  • Children and Pensions

    Children and Pensions

    Alessandro Cigno and Martin Werding

    An analysis of the effect of public pension schemes on a country's fertility rate and a proposal for policies to reform pension coverage in light of this.

    The rapidly aging populations of many developed countries—most notably Japan and member countries of the European Union—present obvious problems for the public pension plans of these countries. Not only will there be disproportionately fewer workers making pension contributions than there are retirees drawing pension benefits, but the youth-to-age imbalance would significantly affect the total contributive capacity of future generations and hence their total income growth. In Children and Pensions, Alessandro Cigno and Martin Werding examine the way pension policy and child-related benefits affect fertility behavior and productivity growth. They present theoretical arguments to the effect that public pension coverage as such will reduce aggregate fertility and may raise aggregate household savings. They argue further that public pensions, as they are currently designed, discourage parents from private human capital investment in their children to improve the children's future earning capacity. After an overview of pension and child benefit policies (focusing on the European Union, Japan, and the United States), the authors offer an empirical and theoretical analysis and a simulation of the effects of the policies under discussion. Their policy proposals to address declines in fertility and productivity growth include the innovative suggestion that relates a person's pension entitlements to his or her number of children and the children's earning ability—proposing that, in effect, a person's pension could be financed in part or in full by the pensioner's own children.

    • Hardcover $8.75
    • Paperback $30.00

Contributor

  • Fertility and Public Policy

    Fertility and Public Policy

    How to Reverse the Trend of Declining Birth Rates

    Noriyuki Takayama and Martin Werding

    Experts discuss the appropriateness and effectiveness using public policy to influence fertility decisions.

    In 2050, world population growth is predicted to come almost to a halt. Shortly thereafter it may well start to shrink. A major reason behind this shift is the fertility decline that has taken place in many developed countries. In this book, experts discuss the appropriateness and effectiveness of using public policy to influence fertility decisions. Contributors discuss the general feasibility of public interventions in the area of fertility, analyze fertility patterns and policy design in such countries as Japan, South Korea, China, Sweden, and France, and offer theoretical analyses of parental fertility choices that provide an overview of a broad array of child-related policy instruments in a number of OECD and EU countries.

    The chapters show that it is difficult to gauge the effectiveness of such policy interventions as child-care subsidies, support for women's labor-force participation, and tax incentives. Data are often incomplete, causal relations unproved, and the role of social norms and culture difficult to account for. Investigating reasons for the decline in fertility more closely will require further study. This volume offers the latest work on this increasingly important subject.

    • Hardcover $35.00