9th Conference European Sociological Association

RN01 Ageing in Europe

2009-09-04 09:00:00 2009-09-04 10:30:00 Friday, 4 September 09:00 - 10:30 Early Retirement Building II, C5.07

The intention to retire early. A comparative study between employees of different European countries.

The ageing of the working population combined with an ongoing early retirement trend is a major policy concern in many OECD countries, since they will threaten living standards and put enormous pressure on the financing of our social protection systems (OECD, 2006). In order to retain older people in employment and to develop adequate policies that stimulate work participation among older employees, an increasing amount of research is devoted to the determinants of people's early retirement intentions. However, most of these studies focus on financial and health related determinants (Smyer, M. A., & Pitt-Catsouphes, M., 2007), (Kalwij, A. & Vermeulen, F., 2008).
The purpose of the present paper is to further examine the determinants that might influence the retirement intentions of older workers. Therefore, we expand previous studies in two different ways. First, we examine income and health related variables as well as several subjective characteristics (e.g. satisfaction with work, psychological well-being, locus of control,...) that might determine early retirement intentions of older employees. Second, we use data from the Gender and Generations Programme Surveys (GGPS), a large representative panel survey, which allowed us to examine differences in early retirement intentions between several European countries. More specifically, we selected respondents aged 45 to 59 years from five European countries (France, Hungary, Bulgaria, Georgia and Germany).
Consistent with previous research, age was found to play a major role in subjects' intention to take an early exit from the labour market. In addition, our results underline the importance of subjective variables (e.g. work satisfaction). The relationship between financial and psycho-social variables will be further discussed from a multi-country perspective.