Latest Issue

How will ageing societies work?

Significant policy interventions will be needed to address the demographic imbalance

By George Magnus  

MOSCOW, RUSSIA - NOVEMBER 1, 2017: Opening of Serebryany Universitet [Silver University], an education programme for senior citizens. The programme offers free gadget training, courses in English and German languages, volunteering, journalism, dancing, and craft as well as psychological guidance on how to resolve conflicts and establish effective communication. Artyom Geodakyan/TASS

Unless fertility rates rise dramatically in advanced economies in the next 20-30 years, their ageing populations will become a serious problem.

The issue is not that we are living longer and have many years ahead of us after retirement; both of these things are cause for celebration. But the change in the age structure of our populations is going to give rise to a spate of economic problems, to which we will have to develop various coping mechanisms. One fundamental issue is labour force participation.

Register today to continue reading

You’ve hit your limit of three articles in the last 30 days. To get seven more, simply enter your email address below.

You’ll also receive our free e-book Prospect’s Top Thinkers 2020 and our newsletter with the best new writing on politics, economics, literature and the arts.

Prospect may process your personal information for our legitimate business purposes, to provide you with newsletters, subscription offers and other relevant information.

Click here to learn more about these purposes and how we use your data. You will be able to opt-out of further contact on the next page and in all our communications.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to

More From Prospect