As the average age of the population continues to rise in industrialized nations, the fiscal impacts of aging demand ever-closer attention. Closing the Deficit examines one oft-discussed approach to the issue—encouraging people to work longer than they now do.
Workers would spend more years paying taxes and fewer years drawing pension and health benefits. But how much difference to spending and revenues would longer working lives make? What steps could be taken to make longer working lives attractive? And what would happen to older Americans not in a position to prolong their work lives? Leading scholars examine these issues in Closing the Deficit, edited by Brookings economists Gary Burtless and Henry Aaron.
September 1, 1999
Gary Burtless is a senior fellow in Economic Studies at Brookings and a former economist with the U.S. Department of Labor. His previous books include A Future of Lousy Jobs? and Does Money Matter? (both Brookings), and he is a former editor of the Brookings-Wharton Papers on Urban Affairs. Henry J. Aaron is a senior fellow in Economic Studies at the Brookings Institution and the author or editor of numerous books, including Using Taxes to Reform Health Insurance (with Leonard E. Burman), The Problem That Won't Go Away, and Behavioral Dimensions of Retirement Economics, all published by Brookings.