Futuribles Journal n° 442

Économie, emploi - Éducation - Population - Société, modes de vie

How to Reduce Intergenerational Inequality? A Range of Possible Solutions


In our last issue (no. 441, March-April 2021), we began a dossier on intergenerational inequality in France, related particularly to the debates stimulated by the Covid crisis, which has serious consequences for both the older generations (more affected by the pandemic) and the young, who are suffering the economic and psycho-social effects of the crisis. André Masson showed in that issue how intergenerational economic inequality appeared to be increasing dangerously.

In this second article, he proposes a range of possible solutions, particularly for strengthening solidarity between the older and younger generations — in other words, for investing in the future. After reviewing the ideologies underlying the various reform routes, he lays out a number of mechanisms that might change the way public money is redistributed and address the imbalances between generations: the targeting of particular categories (the young, the poor etc.), tax incentives or special tax arrangements, mutualization among senior citizens of the costs of dependency, the introduction of systems that bind together the fate of the different generations etc. These are proposals that can fruitfully inform future discussions on the measures to be taken to address the many socio-economic difficulties currently besetting France.

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