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미국인의 조기퇴직 역전현상과 고령자 사회정책의 미래
A Reversal in Retirement Ages and the Future of Social Policy in the United States

전광희   (충남대학교 사회학과UU0001302  );
  • 초록

    본 연구의 목적은 미국 인구의 고령화 과정에서 장기적인 조기퇴직의 경향과 1985년 이후 일어난 그것의 역전현상에 주목하면서, 그것에 기여하는 사회경제적 여건과 사회정책 프로그램의 변화를 검토하는 것이다. 미국인의 조기퇴직, 곧 퇴직연령 하락의 주원인은 장기적인 부(富)의 증대이며, 이것은 고령 노동자들이 소득창출을 위한 유급노동시장 참여를 하지 않고서도 높은 수준의 생활을 가능하도록 하였다. 사회보장 퇴직연금과 기업 연금제도의 확대 성장은 강제퇴직제도의 도입과 아울러 1980년대 중반까지 조직퇴직의 증가추이에 공헌하였다. 본 연구는 최근의 조기퇴직 역전현상을 지속시킬 수 있는 유인책으로서 고령자 사회정책 프로그램 등에 주목한다. 물론, 여기서 과연 조기퇴직의 역전을 가져오는 사회정책이 필요한가에 대한 질문이다. 환언하면, 노동생산성의 증대나 은퇴전의 근면성(勤勉性)의 향상은 미국인들이 평균수명의 신장으로 퇴직, 곧 "제3의 인생" 이 길어진다고 하더라도 보다 높은 사회생활을 유지하는데 아무런 어려움이 없을 것임을 의미한다. 대부분의 미국인은 현행 각종 사회정책 프로그램이 현역 노동자들에게 상당한 부담을 가져다주더라도 조기퇴직을 허용하는 각종 사회정책 프로그램이 유지되기를 원하고 있다. 이러한 관점에서 볼 때, 미국의 고령자 사회정책은 조기퇴직의 역전을 지속하려는 정책을 계속하기보다는 현역 노동자의 근면성 향상이나 노동생산성의 향상에 초점을 맞추는 프로그램의 개발에도 관심을 집중할 필요가 있을 것이다.요가 있을 것이다.


    The aim of this paper is to describe a long-term trend toward earlier retirement and its reversal since 1985 in the United States, together with changes in socioeconomic conditions and social-policy programs which have contributed to this new development. The American people's recent propensity to retire at relatively younger ages was mainly a result of secular increase in individual wealth that had made it possible for them to enjoy higher standard of living without their participation in labor market activities at older ages. In addition to the introduction of compulsory retirement system, both social security retirement pension program and corporate pension system have also contributed significantly to the declining retirement age and its reversal around the mid-1980s. This paper pays full attention to the set of social policy programs which are currently being used to sustain the recent reversal in ages at retirement. The basic question to be raised here, however, is about whether or not the U. S. government will ave to continue to implement the social policies and programs used to discourage the elderly from retiring at relatively younger ages in the future. In this paper, it is argued that labor productivity growth and improvement in work attitude prior to retirement will help the elderly find little difficulties in having higher standard of living, despite their further lengthening of life expectancy at birth and post-retirement survival chances, the latter being often called the "third life". Most American people hope that the social-policy programs that have promoted early retirement will remain unchanged in the first part of the 21st century while they will put significant financial burden on their future descendants who have to work in the paid labor market. Taking this observation in consideration, this paper concludes that the U. S. government has to focus more on developing the programs that improve work propensity and labor productivity among the currently working-age population rather than continuing to implement the programs that sustain the recent reversal in retirement ages.ment ages.


  • 주제어

    조기퇴직 .   퇴직연령 .   고령자 사회정책 .   퇴직연금 .   기업연금 .   노동자 근면성 .   노동생산성.  

  • 참고문헌 (29)

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