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Sluggish economic growth, rising unemployment, and a rapidly aging population all exert financial pressure on public pension systems and highlight the need for major reform. Martin Schludi traces the political process of pension reform in Austria, France, Germany, Italy, and Sweden from the 1980s onward and skillfully analyzes the various political and economic factors in pension reform, such as gaining public support for policy initiatives. Schludi also considers case studies that range from successfully restructured pension arrangements to complete policy failures. This volume is an essential and valuable resource that demystifies the complex factors involved in social policy reforms driven by fiscal concerns.