Center for Retirement Research

The Center for Retirement Research at Boston College aims to promote research on retirement matters, to convey new findings to the policy community and the public, to widen access to important data sources, and to help train new scholars. The center’s mission is to create first-class research and form a strong link between the academic community and decision makers in the private and public sectors about a matter of serious importance to the future of the nation.

The Center for Retirement Research’s staff has wide-ranging experience in retirement research, grant management, and government policymaking. The center’s staff also consists of student research assistants who give support for all activities of the center. The Panel of Outside Scholars/Advisors is a set of six independent experts that evaluatesthe center’s research program and its dissemination and education activities.

The research priorities of the Center for Retirement Research are addressed to an assortment of important retirement policy issues. The center comprises researchers and experts at Boston College and several affiliated institutions. The team holds a breadth of knowledge on retirement matters and institutions almost unmatched in the field. The group is really interdisciplinary with backgrounds in demography, political science, sociology, actuarial science, economics, social work, and psychology.

There are over thirty ongoing research projects at the Center for Retirement Research that concentrate on wide range retirement issues including Social Security, labor force participation, employer-sponsored pensions, and household saving.

The publications of the Center for Retirement Research include the following:

Social Security
This program of the center, which has long offered the immensity of retirement income for most Americans, features future challenges. The full retirement age for complete benefits is rising and the program goes on to face a long-term funding shortfall. Views vary on whether spending and revenue changes should be done within the present system or in combination with the introduction of personal accounts. Researchers of the center are studying various options for reforming the system and shed light on their social, economic, and budgetary implications.

Private Pensions
The center’s researchers discover the adequacy of present household saving and issues that could influence current and future saving behavior as the nature of pension coverage has shifted dramatically throughout this time with the fast rise of 401 (k)s and other plans with comparable features.

Savings and Consumption
Researchers explore the sufficiency of existing household saving and aspects that affect today’s and future’s saving manners as the individual’s need to save, even those with pensions, become an important issue.

Work Retirement
Center researchers evaluate the potential impact of health care expenditures on individuals’ retirement security.

International issues
Researchers of the center survey the retirement setting in other nations and reviews the implications of their policy choices.

The Center for Retirement Research also provides financial assistance to train new scholars and to offer additional experience for current researchers.