World Bank Pensions Core Course 2014: The Design and Implementation of Old Age Income Protection Programs
March 3-14, 2014Washington, DC

This two-week "core course" aims to provide participants with an in-depth understanding of the conceptual and practical issues involved in the design and implementation of pension and social security systems.


This two-week "core course" aims to provide participants with an in-depth understanding of the conceptual and practical issues involved in the design and implementation of pension and social security systems.

Participants will have the opportunity to present and discuss challenging issues concerning pensions and social security in their own country, and work toward solutions with other participants and experts.

Course Description
The course draws from worldwide data, analysis and knowledge. It aims to provide policymakers and other stakeholders in developing countries with an overview of the approaches for analyzing pension systems and policy and institutional reform options. The course reviews lessons from pension reforms around the world and uses team exercises for participants to explore reform options using developing country examples.

The course is taught by experts from the World Bank and other agencies and uses a mix of learning methods, including presentations, hands-on exercises and group projects. It includes:

  • Instructional presentations on the key approaches to the design and reform of public and private pension systems and institutional development challenges;
  • Presentations and applied cases using a diagnostic methodology and modeling techniques;
  • Presentations from select case studies illustrating the challenges and lessons learned from different reform measures employed; and
  • Hands-on participatory workshop sessions in which course participants will work in groups to design reform programs for country cases which apply the instructional content.
  • This course comprises six interrelated and complementary topics: (1) the framework for social protection and labor in general and pensions analysis in particular; (2) pension concepts, identities, and design options; (3) diagnostic techniques, benchmarks and assessment tools; (4) pension governance and investment management (5) regulation and supervision; and (6) country case examples.

As a sampling, the course will consider:

  • A framework for analysis of pension reform needs, objectives and design options.
  • The tools and methods used to undertake evidence-based diagnoses of the need for reform and determine the design options and parameters for pension programs. Key diagnostic tools will include the Pension Reform Options
  • Simulation Toolkit (PROST) and the ADePT Social Protection micro data module.
  • Pension reform needs, issues and options for civil servant pension schemes.
  • Pension administration, collections and data management – issues and options.
  • Policy options to strengthen coverage.
  • Regulation and supervision of private pensions.
  • Pension investment management and governance.
  • Pension reform challenges in select regions of the world.
  • Group analyses of individual country reform needs and options.

Target Audience

This course is designed for policymakers, policy analysts, research staff and pension fund professionals from public and private pension funds, Government agencies and other development partners. It is also open to operational staff from the World Bank and from bilateral and multilateral agencies. As teamwork is important in pension program, we encourage interested countries to nominate teams engaged in the design, implementation or evaluation of pension and elderly assistance programs.


The two-week course is offered at the subsidized rate of US$2,500 per participant from World Bank client counterpart countries. For participants from international organizations, donor agencies and others, the fee is US$3,500. The fee includes tuition, training materials, medical insurance and other conference costs. Participants will be responsible for their own transportation to and from Washington, D.C., as well as their hotel and subsistence costs. The World Bank is negotiating a group rate with hotels in the Washington area and participants may benefit from these rates on a first come first served basis.

Past participants’ course evaluations

The course has been evaluated using several methods including participants’ self-assessment and satisfaction. It has received high ratings and been well appreciated by a varied audience.

The list of speakers includes recognized experts in Pensions from the World Bank, OECD, other international organizations, academics, private consultants and policy makers from around the world.