NTA Presentations and Seminars


Andrew Mason with assistance from Bahram Sanginabadi: The Generational Economy, University of Kurdistan, Sanandaj, Iran, January 12, 2022.

Abstract: An important and under-studied feature of any economy is the reallocation of resources across age groups at a point time and across generations over time. This seminar will explain the concepts and empirical features of the generational economy drawing heavily on National Transfer Accounts.

Part I: Introduction and Demographic Transition

Part II: Generational Economy and the Lifecycle

Part III: Population Change and Aggregate Lifecycle Deficits

Part IV: Funding the Deficits and Policy Challenges in Aging Societies

U of Kurdistan handout, Persian


Andrew Mason, Ronald Lee, and members of the NTA Network, IUSSP International Population Conference, December 2021


Population size, growth, age structure and geographic distribution influence economies because of systematic features of the human lifecycle. Population concentrated in the middle years of life where labor productivity is high directly influences total economic production. “Dependent” populations at young and old ages consume much more than they produce through their labor with implications for living standards. The global economic impact of population reflects national variation in the lifecycle interacting with national differences in demographic change. Here we draw on National Transfer Accounts to estimate lifecycles for 186 countries and highlight six important effects of population on the global economy. Because the expected global population increase of 40 percent will occur in areas where per capita GDP is low, the impact on GDP growth will be modest. The changing shape of the economic lifecycle, with high consumption and low labor supply at older ages, will heighten the economic effects of population aging. However, we find that the costs of aging are absorbed by prime age adults rather than children or the elderly. Many pressing issues, environmental, health, and economic, are global in nature and inextricably linked to population. Understanding the connections is essential.

Presentation, paper, and related material:

Ron Lee: How demographic trends will bring economic change in coming decades (US and World), a talk for the American Association of Individual Investors-- Los Angeles Branch, November 13 2021


This is a talk for an association of individual investors about demographic trends and the way they will affect the national and global economy. In coming decades, demographic change will bring fundamental economic changes in the US and the global economy. Population and labor force growth will slow, populations in upper income countries will age, and lower income countries will experience demographic dividends as their labor forces grow faster than their populations. There will be many results, including: • Global GDP growth rates will decline by 1% as labor force growth slows and the new workers are in regions of the world where labor productivity is low, particularly sub-Saharan Africa. • Population aging in upper middle income and high income countries will bring rising capital per worker, continuing to depress interest rates while raising wages. • Demographic change will raise living standards in many developing countries but in high income countries it will push up government debt; net effects on per capita consumption are uncertain.

Lee 2021 Investors Webinar Powerpoint

Ron Lee: Using NTA at individual level to measure levels and trends in inequality. Seminar for NTA in Central Asia held at the Institute of Demography, NRU Higher School of Economics and funded by UNFPA, Oct 25-28, 2021.

Lee 2021 Micro-NTA and inequality ppt

Andrew Mason “Six Ways Population Change Is Affecting Economies Around the World” Symposium for the Construction of National Transfer Accounts (NTA) and Their Use in Social Policy, National Research University Higher School of Economics, Moscow, Oct 25-28, 2021.

Part I: See IUSSP presentation above. Part II: Six Ways Part II

Andrew Mason “Population and Sustainable Development" Expert Group Meeting, Population Division, United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, July 21, 2021

Abstract: Population and sustainable development are connected in many complex ways that have been important in the past and will surely be important in the future. Many countries are still experiencing the demographic transition and they may follow a path that is informed by the experience of countries that have largely completed the transition. In many other countries, however, a new demographic regime is taking hold with implications for sustainable development that are uncertain.

In this overview I want to highlight four features of the demographic transition and its aftermath that have been and will continue to be important to meeting sustainable development goals. I rely extensively on the National Transfer Accounts (NTA) framework and data that are intended to improve analysis of the linkages between population and economic outcomes (Lee and Mason 2011) (United Nations Population Division 2013). The data was compiled by research teams from more than 70 countries including renowned experts, several of whom are present today. I also make extensive use of UN population estimates and projections (United Nations Population Division 2019).

UN EGM 2021

Ron Lee: Population Ageing, Macroeconomic Impacts, and the Care Economy, Lecture Series on Carework and Intergenerational Justice (Online), University of Southern Denmark, April 15 2021

Abstract: During the Demographic Transition populations move gradually from high fertility and high mortality to low fertility and low mortality, a process that takes many decades. These changes bring deep changes in the population age distribution, the share of the young and the old in the population, leading to the “demographic dividend” when the share in the working ages rises in the middle of the transition and later to population aging when the share of the elderly rises later in the transition. This full process takes a couple of centuries to unfold and has not yet been completed by any country. Many developing countries are in the dividend phase, while the richer countries are experiencing population aging. To assess the economic implications of these demographic changes, we can combine them with estimates of economic activity-- production and consumption-- by age. The economic support ratio for a country is the ratio of producers to consumers and we can see how these ratios change over time. This shows the benefits of the demographic dividend and the costs of population aging. However, measures of economic activity do not reflect unpaid work done in the home, mostly by women, caring for children and perhaps the elderly, cooking, cleaning, shopping, and so on. Nor do measures of consumption of a meal, for example, reflect the unpaid time that has gone into shopping for food, preparing a meal, and cleaning up afterward. Here I will show standard measures of economic activity by age for many countries based on National Transfer Accounts (NTA) estimates. I will also show measures of the unpaid care work by women and men from a related project, National Time Transfer Accounts (NTTA). These are of great interest in themselves, but in addition they can be monetized and combined with the standard estimates to provide more complete measures of work and consumption by age. In these more complete estimates children’s consumption is much more costly because of parental time but costs of the elderly are little affected because the elderly meet most of their own and their partner’s time needs. With these more complete measures, fertility decline yields a larger demographic dividend while costs of population aging are somewhat reduced.

Lee 2021 Denmark ppt

Ron Lee: Economic consequences of slower population growth and faster aging: Will there be a Great Demographic Reversal? This presentation is part of a seminar series on the economic implications of global demographic trends, held at Bocconi University in Milan, Italy, April 8 2021 Abstract: This talk reviews the book The Great Demographic Reversal by authors Goodhart and Pradhan who also spoke. This review emphasizes various finding based on NTA which are sometimes in agreement with the conclusions of this book and sometimes not.

Lee 2021 Great Demographic Reversal ppt


Ron Lee: Some Economic Impacts of Changing Population Age Distributions -- Capital, Labor and Transfers, welcome seminar for the new cohort of students of the European Doctoral School of Demography, based this year at CED in Barcelona, October 29, 2020.

Lee 2020 Barcelona Powerpoint


Ron Lee: How Population Aging Affects the Macroeconomy, The Jackson Hole Economic Policy Symposium on Re-Evaluating Labor Market Dynamics, sponsored by the Kansas City Federal Reserve Bank, August 21-23 2014

Abstract: Population aging is inevitable and in most of the world either is occurring now or will be soon. In most rich industrial economies, the elderly consume much more than younger adults and earn much less due to early retirement. For this reason, a rising ratio of elderly to the working age population puts pressure on public and private support systems. Support ratios are projected to decline at .3 to .8 per cent per year through mid-century, constricting funds available for consumption, saving, or human capital investment. In countries where the gap between consumption and earning at older ages is filled mainly by asset income rather than public or private transfers, the support ratio exaggerates the impact of population aging. A more appropriate measure takes elder asset income into account and shows a smaller impact in the US, Mexico, UK, S. Korea, Thailand, India and the Philippines. In countries with heavy reliance on public and private transfers, such as Sweden, Austria, Hungary, Slovenia, Germany, Brazil, Costa Rica or Peru, the two measures show the same impact. Many other factors not discussed here could potentially moderate the impact of population aging, such as rising human capital investment, improving health and vitality at older ages, an increased age at retirement, increased female labor force participation, and international capital flows. Population aging presents serious challenges but these need not be overwhelming.

The annual forum at Jackson Hole is a key economic policy meeting attended by dozens of central bankers, policymakers, academics and economists from around the world.

Lee 2014 Jackson Hole Talk

Lee 2014 Jackson Hole Powerpoint


World Bank Meeting on the Demographic Dividend, July 23, 2013

The World Bank convened a meeting on the Demographic Dividend in collaboration with the Bill & Melinda Gates Institute of Population and Reproductive Health. Andy Mason presented estimates of the demographic dividends in Africa based on NTA: Mason 2013 World Bank Talk.

Population Association of America 2013, "Authors Meet Critics" session

The Population Association of America had its annual meeting in New Orleans on April 11-13, 2013. An "authors meet critics" session was part of the agenda, featuring the National Transfer Accounts book "Population Aging and the Generational Economy" (lead authors Ronald Lee and Andrew Mason). The session was chaired by David Canning of Harvard University. We would like to thank David Canning, Frank Heiland (City University of New York), and Bob Willis (University of Michigan) for their comments, as well as all session participants.

Downloadable presentations (PowerPoint Slides): Authors' Presentation of the book's findings authors meet critics Presentation by Bob Willis Willis_Lee_Mason_session


Harmonization for Health in Africa (HHA) Conference

The HHA Conference (A conference of African Ministers of Finance and Health) extensively featured NTA research in their session titled "Seizing the Demographic Dividend Now: A One-Time Opportunity for Africa". Click on the link for more information and downloadable presentations.

Cassio Turra on Demographic Dividends at Rio+20

The United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio 20+) took place in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in June 2012. World leaders, along with participants from governments, the private sector, NGOs and other groups, discussed poverty reduction, social equity advancement, and environmental protection. The Conference had two themes: “a green economy in the context of sustainable development poverty eradication”, and “institutional framework for sustainable development”.

UN Commission on Population and Development – New York

The forty-fifth session of the UN Commission on Population and Development dealing with issues of population and development, focused on adolescents and youth. The meeting took place 23-27 April 2012. These sessions contribute substantively to the on-going deliberations of the United Nations in the economic and social development field. This year over 500 NGO representatives also participated. One of the keynote speakers was Andrew Mason, whose presentation “Adolescents and youth: their numbers and economic roles” is available here: CPD45_Keynote_Mason.

IPCI/ICPD meeting, Istanbul

The 2012 International Parliamentarians’ Conference took place on 23-24 May 2012, in Istanbul, Turkey. Its goal was to set a course of continued action in the coming years for the implementation of the Programme of Action of the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) by 2014 and beyond. Andrew Mason’s presentation “Status of the Cairo Agenda” is available here: Status of the Cairo Agenda - Andrew Mason.

CDESG meeting at Canadian Economic Association

An Ageing in Development Panel by the Canadian Development Economics Study Group (CDESG) took place at the Canadian Economics Association meeting on June 9, 2012. The panel provided an overview of a framework to quantify economic flows across generations as well as insights on how population ageing will affect economies in the developing and developed world. Panel members were Andrew Mason, Tim Miller, and Mostafa Askari (Assistant Parliamentary Budget Officer, Economic and Fiscal Analysis, Canada). Their presentations are available here:

Mostafa Askari - Economic and Fiscal Impacts of population Ageing in Canada (link: Mostafa Askari CEA Presentation - Calgary 2012)

Andrew Mason - Population Aging and the Generational Economy: A Global Perspective (link: Andrew Mason - Calgary Seminar)

Tim Miller - Population Aging in Latin America and the Caribbean: A New Era (link: Tim Miller Calgary presentation June)

Conference of Montreal

The 2012 Conference of Montreal took place from June 11 to June 14, 2012. It’s theme was “A Global Economy in Transition: New Strategies, New Partnerships”, and addressed subjects such as the economic and financial crisis, the accessibility innovations in the health sector, the equitable use of resources, welcoming immigrants, the free trade agreements and sustainable development. Andrew Mason participated in the forum “Demographic Shifts: Threats or Opportunities?”.

Shanghai Forum 2012

Shanghai Forum is an international economic forum hosted by Fudan University and sponsored by The Korea Foundation for Advanced Studies. The goal of the forum is to engage leaders in all fields to dialogue and collaborate to provide perspectives and advices for Asia’s overall economic, political, social, and cultural progress. The theme of the 2012 conference was “Economic Globalization and the Choice of Asia: Strategies for 2011-2020”. Ron Lee presented at the conference: “Is Fertility Too Low? Capital, Transfers, and Consumption” (link: Ron Lee presentation Shanghai).

European Population Conference

The European Population Conference took place in Stockholm, Sweden, on 13-16 June 2012. Gretchen Donehower and Ivan Mejia made presentations at the conference.

Gretchen's presentation (with Ivan Mejia) was titled "Everybody Works: Gender, Age and Economic Activity" and is available here: Donehower_Mejia_Presentation

Ivan's presentation (with Alma Vega) was titled "Opportunity costs: The fiscal cost of (not) educating immigrant minors in the U.S." and is available here: epc-2012_alma

Poster session: "Socioeconomic Differences in the Distribution by Age of Public Transfers in Mexico" available here: poster_EPC

BOJ-IMES Conference - Demographic Changes and Macroeconomic Performance

The Institute for Monetary and Economic Studies, Bank of Japan (BOJ-IMES) Conference is international meeting of central bankers, and the 2012 theme was “macroeconomic consequences of demographic change”. The conference took place May 30th – 31st, 2012 at the Institute for Monetary and Economic Studies, Bank of Japan. Ron Lee presented “Macroeconomic implications of demographic change: A global perspective”. His presentation is available here: Ron Lee BOJ presentation May30-2012.

In July 2012, Ronald Lee gave a presentation at the NBER Summer Institute on the topic of aging and social security. The presentation focused on USA NTA, but with international comparisons. Download the full presentation here: LeeMasonNBERSummerInstitute

In May 2012, Paulo Saad gave a presentation in Cuba at the Universidad de la Habana on "Demographic Change and Intergenerational Transfers: Latin America and Cuba." See here for report published about the meeting (in Spanish): Paulo_Saad_INFOPOB_V_2_2012

In April 2012, Andrew Mason and Ronald Lee gave a talk at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. The title of their presentation was "Dividend or Deficit? The Economic Effects of Population Age Structure."

During 2012, the Austrian team gave several presentations on the Austrian NTA, and the Austrian NTA was reported as one of the subjects of the month by the Austrian Academy of Sciences. Link to the report (in German).

In mid March, Ronald Lee and Andrew Mason presented a paper at the International Conference on Challenges of Population Ageing in Asia, held in New Delhi. The conference was organized under the auspice of the National Academies. See the list of participants of the conference: NAparticipants.

Andrew Mason (April 23-27, 2012) "Adolescents and Youth: Their Numbers and Economic Roles" presented at the Commission on Population and Development, Forty-fifth session.


Ronald Lee and Andrew Mason presented at the launch of the NTA book "Population aging and the generational economy: A global perspective" in New York on September 19, 2011. View the presentation here: Book launch presentation

Ronald Lee presented "Population aging and intergenerational transfers: A global perspective" at University of Pennsylvania, Population Studies Center on September 26, 2011. View his presentation here: Ron Lee UPenn presentation


Tim Miller, Carl Mason, & Mauricio Holz (July 14, 2009) Projections of Public Expenditures on Education, Health, and Pensions in Ten Latin American Countries," presented at the World Bank, Washington, DC. Fiscal_Proj_July2009


Andrew Mason (May 28-29, 2008) How will income security and health care financing be affected by population aging; how should they change? An international perspective. Nat_Ac_May09

Ron Lee (October 28, 2008) "Some Macroeconomic Consequences of the Demographic Transition", presented at Univ of Michigan Pop Studies Center and at University of Wisconsin Pop and Ecology Center. DemTransMacroMichWisc_08.v5

Andy Mason (October 17, 2008) "Tranfers and Assets in Economic Lifecycle: NTA Evidence," presented at the Department of Economics, University of Hawaii. Econ_101708

Ron Lee (October 7, 2008) "Some Macroeconomic Consequences of the Demographic Transition", presented at the World Bank, Buenos Aires, Argentina. DemTransMacro_BuenosAires_08.3

Jorge Bravo and Mauricio Holz (October 8, 2008) "National Transfers Accounts: Concepts and results for Chile". UNFPA/Institute for Future Studies Meeting on Mainstreaming Age Structural Transitions into Economic Development Policy and Planning. 7-9 October 2008. Vienna Institute of Demography, Austria. Bravo and Holz 2008

Tim Miller (October 8, 2008) "The impact of changing age structure on transfer systems: Latin America, 1950-2050". UNFPA/Institute for Future Studies Meeting on Mainstreaming Age Structural Transitions into Economic Development Policy and Planning. 7-9 October 2008. Vienna Institute of Demography, Austria. Vienna 2008

Ronald Lee (July 9, 2008) "Macroeconomic Consequences of the Demographic Transition". DemTransMacro_RSI_08.v3

Andrew Mason (April 7-8, 2008) "Low Fertility and Intergenerational Transfers," Symposium on Equality without Children? Institute for Future Studies, Stockholm, Sweden Stockholm 2008.

Andrew Mason (March 17, 2008) "National Transfer Accounts: A Quick Overview" Presentation to EWC Research Program. NTA Quick

Andrew Mason (January 24, 2008) "Demographic Change in Asia: The Implications of Evolving Support Systems" AARP/EWC Conference on Community 50+ Asia: Building the Future Together, Ihilani Hotel and Conference Center, Honolulu, Hawaii. AARP 2008

Andrew Mason (January 8, 2008) "Population Aging, Intergenerational Transfers, and the Economy: Introducing Age into National Accounts" presented to the Initiative in Population Research, Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio. Columbus 2008


Ronald Lee (November 29, 2007) "Economic Consequences of Population Aging in Asia" presented at a Colloquium Series on the demography and economics of aging in East Asia, at the Asia-Pacific Research Center of Stanford University. StanfordAsiaDemog

Ronald Lee (April 9, 2007) "The Economic Implications of Changing Age Structures" Keynote Address to the United Nations Population and Development Commission, United Nations Headquarters, New York, NY. LUN2007P


Andrew Mason (Octorber 12, 2006) "Changing age structures and their implications for development" Panel Discussion, the United Nations Population Division, United Nations Headquarters, New York, NY. MUN2006P

Naohiro Ogawa (Octorber 12, 2006) "Changing age structures of population in Asia and their implications for development" Panel Discussion, the United Nations Population Division, United Nations Headquarters, New York, NY. OUN2006P

Andrew Mason (September 29, 2006) "Aging, Intergenerational Transfers, and Economic Growth," Department of Economics and Population Studies Program, University of Hawaii at Manoa. MUH2006P

Andrew Mason, “Low Fertility, Population Aging, and the Future of Asia’s Economies,” Commemorative Lecture, Seventh Asia Pacific Forum, Awaji Conference Japan, Awaji Yumebutai International Conference Center, August 4, 2006.

Ronald Lee (Aug 31, 2006) "Population aging and intergenerational transfers: a macro-perspective" presentation at University of Southern California. LPAIT2006P

Andrew Mason, San-Hyop Lee, Ronald Lee, and Chong-Bun An, "Aging and Social Policy: An International Perspective," EWC/KDI Conference on Social Policy at the Crossroads: Worldwide Trends and Implications for Korea, Honolulu, 20-21 July 2006. MLLA2006P

Ronald Lee. Presentation in Honor of Richard Easterlin’s Continuing Contributions: A Macro-Perspective on Intergenerational Transfers, University of Southern California, April 1, 2006. L2006

Andrew Mason and Ronald Lee. Transfers, Capital, and Consumption over the Demographic Transition: An International Comparison, Annual Meeting of the Population Association of America, Los Angeles, CA, March 29-April 1, 2006. ML2006 PAA


Andrew Mason. Demographic Dividends: The Past, the Present, and the Future. Joint International Conference of The 21st Century COE (Center of Excellence) Program of Kobe University and the Japan Economic Policy Association (JEPA), Awaji Yumebutai International Conference Center near Kobe, Japan, December 17-18, 2005. 2005 Kobe

Andrew Mason. Familial Transfers and Generational Equity: An Introduction to National Transfer Accounts. 22nd Population Census Conference: Innovations in Collecting, Processing, Using, and Disseminating Census Data, Seattle, Washington, March 7-9, 2005. 2005 Census Directors

Andrew Mason and Ronald Lee. Macroeconomic Demography of Intergenerational Transfers. Intergenerational Family Resource Allocation Meeting, sponsored by NIA and NICHD. Bethesda, MD, March 10-11, 2005. 2005 NIH Workshop

Andrew Mason, An-Chi Tung, Mun Sim Lai, and Tim Miller. Population Aging and Intergenerational Transfers: Introducing Age into National Accounts. Annual Meeting of the Population Association of America, Philadelphia, PA, April 1, 2005. 2005 PAA

Andrew Mason, Ronald Lee, An-Chi Tung, Mun Sim Lai, and Tim Miller. Population Aging and Intergenerational Transfers: Introducing Age into National Accounts. NBER Conference on the Economics of Aging, Boulders, AZ, May 2005. 2005 NBER









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