The three-year deal will see OECD researchers and pension policy experts explore two main retirement challenges for savers with funding from Standard Life.

The first phase of the JRI aims to identify various approaches to retirement income challenges around the world. The second will explore how diverse workforce needs can be met, both forming part of the broader OECD work program on pensions.

The company Phoenix Group and the intergovernmental organization will identify “innovative approaches to retirement income” used overseas to meet the needs of individuals and society more broadly.

The OECD said it would “assess the pros and cons of these solutions” and the conditions under which they have been used.

It will then aim to analyze the roles that gender, ethnicity and socio-economic status play in shaping saving patterns and behaviors during the second phase.

Engagement is a top concern for employers and many want to understand if the solutions and support they offer are right for their purpose, the two companies said.

“As a result, the initiative will place particular emphasis on how factors such as gender, culture, ethnicity and socio-economic background influence savings attitudes and behaviors and ultimately account, solutions and support,” Standard Life and the OECD announced today (4 March).

The JRI’s research results will be discussed by the OECD over the next three years, while Standard Life will use them to support both customers and policy makers in the UK.

Standard Life said it hopes eventually to be able to incorporate the results of the initiative directly into the development of its proposal.

“The OECD’s combination of international reach and pension expertise is unrivaled, and we are delighted to embark on this project with them,” said Andy Curran, Chief Executive of Standard Life. “Our goal through the JRI is to foster innovation in how we meet the diverse needs and desires of savers. By integrating additional research on gender, ethnicity, culture and socio-economic factors, the The OECD will help us shorten the time it takes to improve our proposals, taking into account the latest international thinking.

The senior economist in the OECD’s private pensions unit, Pablo Antolin, said retirement income, gender and diversity issues were “important to consider not just in the UK but elsewhere in the world”.

“We argue that to address the key retirement challenges that aging societies present, we need to understand the different perspectives and concerns of different stakeholders in the pension and retirement world,” he added. “This JRI highlights the views and concerns of a key player and will help us in our role of providing policy guidance to decision makers around the world.”

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