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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.

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