The DEEPEN team presented their newest findings from their research projects during the NORFACE conference at the University of Vienna, from Thursday the 22nd of September to Saturday the 24th. This conference welcomed all GOVERNANCE program members and also other relevant stakeholders from science and politics.  This will be the first conference where all 14 Governance research consortiums get the chance to hear each other’s research progress.

The conference was divided into 5 Governance Themes, which were further divided in panels. The first Governance theme was called „INEQUALITY AND REDISTRIBUTION“, within this theme Philipp Golka took part in panel 1.3 (“Challenges to Democratic Governance and European Economies”) on Saturday from 10.30 – 11.45. Here Philipp presented the research he is working on with Natascha van der Zwan: “Translating democracy into finance? Pension funds and the role of member preferences for investment decisions”.

The fifth governance theme was called „CHANGING AUTHORITY OF INSTITUTIONS” and within PANEL 5.1 (“Evolving Democratic Legitimacy”), on Friday from 14:30 –  15:45, two of the DEEPEN research teams presented their findings. First, Tobias Wiß and Thomas Mayer presented: “Variation In Democratic Legitimacy Of Occupational Pensions”. With their most recent finding being that democratic legitimacy of occupational pensions increases with the degree of compulsion and importance of occupational pensions. Furthermore, collective-representative input legitimacy matters more than individual-direct legitimacy. Fund member representatives and social partners are important actors, whereas existing individual input legitimacy is often not used (due to a lack of knowledge).

Followed by Karen Anderson and Hayley James: “The complexities of representation in funded pension schemes in Ireland”. Within their project they tackle the lack of knowledge about democratic input-legitimacy of funded pensions and its variation across countries by mapping the linkages between different occupational pension schemes and their democratic input-legitimacy. Hereby measuring input-legitimacy by distinguishing individual and collective-representative inclusion in decision-making processes of funded occupational pension schemes. They hypothesise that democratic legitimacy increases with the importance and the degree of compulsion of occupational pensions.

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