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Age of Aging (08 Edition)by George Magnus
Synopses & ReviewsPlease note that used books may not include additional media (study guides, CDs, DVDs, solutions manuals, etc.) as described in the publisher comments.
The year 2008 marks the beginning of the baby boomer retirement avalanche just as the different demographics in advanced and most developing countries are becoming more pronounced. People are worrying again that developments in global population trends, food supply, natural resource availability and climate change raise the question as to whether Malthus was right after all.
The Age of Aging explores a unique phenomenon for mankind and, therefore, one that takes us into uncharted territory. Low birth rates and rising life expectancy are leading to rapid aging and a stagnation or fall in the number of people of working age in Western societies. Japan is in pole position but will be joined soon by other Western countries, and some emerging markets including China. The book examines the economic effects of aging, the main proposals for addressing the implications, and how aging societies will affect family and social structures, and the type of environment in which the baby-boomers' children will grow up.
The contrast between the expected old age bulge in Western nations and the youth bulge in developing countries has important implications for globalization, and for immigration in Western countries - two topics already characterized by rising discontent or opposition. But we have to find ways of making both globalization and immigration work for all, for fear that failure may lead us down much darker paths. Aging also brings new challenges for the world to address in two sensitive areas, the politicization of religion and the management of international security. Governments and global institutions will have to take greater responsibilities to ensure that public policy responses are appropriate and measured.
The challenges arising within aging societies, and the demographic contrasts between Western and developing countries make for a fractious world - one that is line with the much-debated 'decline of the West'. The book doesn't flinch from recognizing the ways in which this could become more visible, but also asserts that we can address demographic change effectively if governments and strengthened international institutions are permitted a larger role in managing change.
Book News Annotation:
British economist Magnus (UBS Investment Bank) has years of experience in the banking industry; in early 2007 he was one of the first to voice concerns of a likely credit crunch in the U.S. and the West. In this text, he turns to the macroeconomic effects of aging, as countries face low or declining birth rates and rising life expectancy. Considering population issues from an historical and contemporary perspective, Magnus looks at the main characteristics of an aging world, their implications, and how some of the economic consequences could be addressed. He then examines population and aging issues in more detail in the U.S., Japan, western Europe, and in emerging and developing countries, followed by discussion of aging in relation to other global trends--immigration, religion, national security--and major questions that the children and grandchildren of today's baby boomers will face. Academic but accessible to general readers. Annotation ©2009 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
The extension of human life expectancy is a great blessing. But, together with declining fertility rates, it creates no less big challenges. In this wide-ranging and well-informed book, George Magnus analyzes what needs to be done to lift the burdens created by aging populations.
–Martin Wolf, Chief Economics Commentator, Financial Times
It is a commonplace that, as the population of the developed world ages, there will be all kinds of profound changes in the way the world works. No one to date, however, has sat down and tried to think harder about the ramifications of increased life expectancy and smaller family size than George Magnus. Bringing to the subject decades of work as one of the City’s best respected economists, Magnus shows himself here to be more than just a shrewd analyst of social and economic trends. He writes with clarity and panache, and leaves the reader feeling almost sorry for the “Boomerangst” generation that is fated to support the prolonged retirements of the Boomers themselves.
–Niall Ferguson, Laurence A. Tisch Professor of History, Harvard University; William Ziegler Professor of Business Administration, Harvard Business School
Demography is boring to most people, except when it comes to their own expected longevity and retirement plans. Demography is, however, destiny for countries. Literally. George Magnus provides a global tour de force of how we got to where we are and where we will be in the years ahead. And most importantly, what policymakers need to do NOW to prepare. In his hands, George makes this subject not only not boring but both enlightening and entertaining. A must read!
–Paul McCulley, Managing Director, Pimco
George Magnus is an author with a magnificent, truly globe-spanning mind—and the rare gift of lucidity, which benefits expert and non-expert readers alike. His book, The Age of Aging provides a powerful guide to humanity’s future.
–Stephan Richter, Editor-in-Chief, The Globalist.com
The Age of Aging explores a unique phenomenon in the history of mankind, and therefore, one which is taking us all into uncharted territory. The combination of low or declining birth rates and rising life expectancy is producing rapid aging of the world’s population and stagnation in the number of people of working age in Western societies. Aging is most obvious in Japan and will soon become more visible in other Western countries and some emerging markets including China, though most poorer countries will not really encounter more severe aging issues for another 20 years. George Magnus examines the broad economic effects of aging, the main proposals for addressing the implications, and how aging societies will affect family and social structures, and the type of environment in which the baby-boomers’ children will grow up.
The contrast between the expected old age bulge in Western nations and the youth bulge in developing countries has important implications for globalization and for immigration in Western countries—two topics already characterized by rising discontent or opposition. Aging issues are also bringing new challenges for the world to address in two sensitive areas, the politicization of religion and the management of international security.
George Magnus asserts that the challenges arising from aging societies will probably not be addressed effectively unless governments assume larger economic and social involvement and responsibilities. He also argues that the global implications of demographic change, along with those of parallel concerns, such as climate change and resource scarcity, will require a more substantial role to be played by strengthened international institutions.
About the Author
George Magnus is the senior economic adviser at UBS Investment Bank and has held this position since 2005. Before this, he was the bank’s chief economist with effect from the merger between UBS and Swiss Bank Corporation in 1998, leading a team of professional economists to the highest accolades in the Institutional Investor and other industry analyst surveys. His previous responsibilities involved senior macroeconomic and managerial positions in Union Bank of Switzerland, SG Warburg and Bank of America. Mr. Magnus’ research is widely known and respected in the financial services community and the business media in the United States, Asia and Europe. He was one of very few to articulate at the beginning of 2007 that a major credit crunch in the United States and the West was likely, with damaging and long-lasting economic consequences around the world. He lives and works in London, is married, and has four children.
Table of Contents
Preface: Why demographics matter.
Chapter 1: Introducing a new age.
Chapter 2: Population issues from Jesus Christ to ageing and climate change.
Chapter 3: The Age of Ageing.
Chapter 4: Economics of Ageing-what is to be done?
Chapter 5: Coming of
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