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Public Policy Institute
Policy Innovation Challenge: Social Security Adequacy and Solvency
In 2016, AARP launched its Innovation Challenge to identify policy solutions to strengthen Social Security. AARP received an overwhelming number of responses to the Challenge from thought leaders across the country. After a review by AARP staff for technical compliance, applications that met the innovation criteria were shared with an expert panel for blind review. The panel included the directors of the Retirement Research Centers at the University of Michigan, Boston College, and the National Bureau of Economic Research.
Seven concepts that ranked highest under the blind review were selected, and, with AARP’s support, the authors further developed their innovation and worked with The Urban Institute to assess the financial and distributional impact of their policy proposals. An Executive Summary and Full Report for each of the seven innovations are below.
Two proposals co-authored by AARP staff ranked highly in the blind review and were among the seven concepts selected to be further developed and modeled by The Urban Institute. Although the proposals are consistent with AARP’s Policy Principles on Social Security, AARP is not endorsing these innovations. Additionally, Innovation Challenge funds were not awarded to AARP staff.
AARP is committed to investing in surfacing and developing policy innovations. AARP does not necessarily support any of the policy proposals identified as part of this innovation challenge.
Policy Innovation Challenge Awardees
Catch-Up Contributions: A Voluntary, Equitable, and Affordable Solution to the Retirement Savings Crisis
Teresa Ghilarducci, Anthony Webb, and Michael Papadopoulos, The New School for Social Research; Wei Sun, Renmin University
Delayed Social Security Claiming: How to Enhance Economic Security and Potentially Enhance System Solvency
Olivia S. Mitchell, The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania; Raimond Maurer, Goethe University of Frankfurt
Expanding Qualifying Credit Options for Social Security Benefits
Christian Weller, McCormack Graduate School of Policy and Global Studies, University of Massachusetts Boston: Darrick Hamilton, Milano School of International Affairs, Management and Urban Policy, and Department of Economics, New School for Social Research, The New School, New York
A Targeted Minimum Benefit Plan (MBP): A New Proposal to Reduce Poverty among the Elderly
Pamela Herd, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Melissa Favreault, Urban Institute; Tim Smeeding, University of Wisconsin–Madison; and Madonna Harrington Meyer, Maxwell School of Syracuse University
A Revised Minimum Benefit Can Better Meet the Adequacy and Equity Standards in Social Security
Kimberly J. Johnson, Indiana University School of Social Work; Elizabeth Johns, University of Massachusetts Boston Gerontology Institute & University of Maine Center on Aging
Add Pre-Retirement Education Benefits Into Social Security
Debra Whitman, EVP/Chief Public Policy Officer, AARP; Marc Freedman, Founder & CEO, Encore.org; and Jim Emerman, Executive Vice President, Encore.org
Supplemental Transition Accounts for Retirement
Gary Koenig, AARP Public Policy Institute; Jason Fichtner, Mercatus Center at George Mason University; and William G. Gale, Brookings Institute
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