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Oxford Studies in Political Philosophy, Volume 3$
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David Sobel, Peter Vallentyne, and Steven Wall

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780198801221

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: July 2017

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198801221.001.0001

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How to Guard against the Risk of Living Too Long

How to Guard against the Risk of Living Too Long

The Case for Collective Pensions

(p.229) 9 How to Guard against the Risk of Living Too Long
Oxford Studies in Political Philosophy, Volume 3

Michael Otsuka

Oxford University Press

This chapter provides a defense of a type of occupational pension, known as “collective defined contribution” (CDC), which is based on the idea that it is possible to limit the employer’s liability to nothing more than a set contribution (a “defined contribution”) while retaining many of the benefits of the collectivization (pooling) of risks of a traditional defined benefit (DB) pension. CDC can be defended against a freedom-based objection from the right via an appeal to the following Hobbesian voluntarist justification: CDC constitutes a “Leviathan of Leviathans” into which it is rational for workers to choose to associate in order to tame longevity and investment risks. CDC pensions that arise from and mirror existing income inequalities can also be defended against an egalitarian objection from the left, by demonstration that they can be grounded in Rawlsian principles of reciprocity and property-owning democracy.

Keywords:   collective defined contribution, pensions, occupational pension, property-owning democracy, reciprocity, retirement, risk pooling, Rawls

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