AGI held an International Workshop on “Aging in Asia” in Kitakyushu City under the joint sponsorship of the Asian Development Bank Institute (ADBI) on November 15-16, 2016.
We invited 15 distinguished scholars from 8 Asian, European, and North American countries including Professor Axel Boersch-Supan of the Max Planck Institute, Professor John Laitner and Professor Edward Norton of the University of Michigan, and Professor Shoshana Grossbard of San Diego State University as well as 11 distinguished scholars from within Japan including Dr. Naoyuki Yoshino, Dean of ADBI, and Professor Naohiro Yashiro, a member of the Council on Economic and Fiscal Policy in the first Abe administration, all of whom are experts on such areas as health, long-term care, pensions, inequality, and labor. Altogether about 40 participants took part in this workshop.
Japan has become the first super-aging society in the world, but many Asian countries are also expected to experience a significant aging of their populations over the next few decades. However, most emerging and developing countries in the region are not equipped with adequate systems in such areas as public pensions, long-term care, and health insurance. An urgent task facing all Asian economies is therefore to reform (and in some cases design) their relevant systems to prepare for population aging and the advent of an aging society. At the workshop, we held active discussions for two full days about what economic and social impacts population aging is having or can have on Asian countries, what issues each country is facing along with population aging, and what lessons the emerging and developing economies of Asia can learn from the experience of the developed countries.
The workshop was funded in part by a 3-year Kakenhi grant (JP15H01950) for studying the topic “The Success and Failure of Social Policy in Japan: Lessons for Asia.”