Monday 14 October 2019

Paying it forward, and handing it back

Understanding equity between generations

At the heart of our social contract and our economy is the belief that each generation should enjoy higher living standards than the ones before them. However, from earnings to home ownership, progress has stalled. As a result generational equity has risen up the political agenda.

It raises deep questions. What obligations do we have to future generations? What obligations do we have to today’s generations throughout the lifecycle? How can policy deliver any social contract? And does a focus on generational unfairness blind us to more pressing social problems?

After the success of our Intergenerational Commission the Resolution Foundation has established the Intergenerational Centre as home for analysis and proposals on intergenerational issues. In a series of events, starting this month and carrying on into next year, the Centre is exploring key issues, from how generational transfers are handled at home, to the impact of technology, demography and climate change on generational interdependence.

In the first of this series of events, the Resolution Foundation hosted a panel of experts to explore whether Britain does have a generational contract, and what that means for our politics, economics and society. The panel – including Professor David Runciman, host of the Talking Politics podcast – was chaired by Lord David Willetts, President of the Intergenerational Centre and author of The Pinch. An audience Q&A followed.