Session 3: Paying for the Past, Providing For The Future: Intergenerational Solidarity





Intergenerational solidarity can be seen as a desirable value in itself: when generations have a positive view of one another or there is consensus between generations on the way forward. It is also a means to an end: a mechanism for supporting mutually beneficial exchanges, both monetary and nonmonetary, between generations.


These exchanges are too often seen as one way: younger workers paying taxes to support older workers’ pension benefits and healthcare costs. But the exchanges, in fact, go in both directions. Forwards, towards younger generations, are investments in infrastructure, innovation and environmental protection. Backwards, to older generations, are pensions and public and family care for older people. The family and the government are the best institutions to ensure this intergenerational exchange works.




The fiscal pressure from ageing populations is large and growing

Projected pension, health and long-term care expenditures,

2010 and 2050, per cent of GDP, advanced G20 countries

Download the underlying data in Excel


Related OECD publications