Loren M. Berry Professor of Economics
I am a Professor of Economics at Dartmouth College and hold the Loren M. Berry Chair in Economics. I am also a Research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) in their programs in Labor Studies and Aging. I have served as a Co-Principal Investigator of the Health and Retirement Study (HRS), the most important data set for the study of the economics of aging. I was a member of the original team that won the contract for the HRS, a panel data set that spans twenty-seven years for the U.S., and has been the model for similar data sets in 38 other countries. My research focuses on four issues in labor economics and the economics of aging: retirement, pensions, Social Security and saving. Together with Thomas Steinmeier and Nahid Tabatabai, my work examines how retirement is defined, the reasons for wide differences in retirement behavior among individuals, the variety of incentives observed in pension plans and the sharp trends in these incentives over time, and the behavioral mechanisms through which pensions and Social Security affect retirement and saving behavior. My work also documents the imperfect knowledge and understanding of pensions and Social Security within the population. It considers current and proposed policies for Social Security, pensions and their regulation, and labor market and retirement income policies. Recent papers with my coauthors investigate the effects of the Great Recession on retirement and wealth, the role of health in retirement, and the retirement readiness of various generations of military veterans.