Social SecurityRonald Lee
Professor of economics and demography, director of UC Berkeley's Center for the Demography and Economics of Aging, member of the National Advisory Council on Aging
Aging, Social Security, U.S. Census data.
Office phone: ( 510) 642-4535
Lee is director of UC Berkeley's Center for the Demography and Economics of Aging, one of 11 centers established by the National Institute on Aging that form part of the national infrastructure for developing the emerging field of the demography of aging.
Lee is the author of numerous articles, papers and publications. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, the American Economic Association, the Population Association of America, the International Union for the Scientific Study of Population, the European Society for Population Economies, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
He has also served as a consultant to the Social Security Administration and was a member of the Census Advisory Committee on Population Statistics for the U.S. Bureau of the Census.
Comments on Social Security:
Lee has testified before the Senate Budget Committee and was an advisor to the Social Security Administration for his work on forecasting aging. After his work suggested that Social Security forecasts of future life expectancy were too low, Social Security actuaries raised their projections and now differ little from his projections.
Lee believes the current problems are serious — but not a crisis — and that the Bush administration is correct in using the "infinite horizon" instead of the current 75-year projection to tabulate the system's finances. The actuaries report an "infinite horizon" estimate of 3.5 percent, about twice as large as the 75-year figure. But Lee's calculations place the measure even higher, at 5.2 percent.