Research within the FSIO covers four areas: old-age benefits; disability / invalidity; family, generations and society; basics and future development of the social security system.
Longer life expectancy in retirement age, the low returns on pension fund investments and developments on the labour market are continually confronting the pension system with new challenges. FSIO Research did a lot of background work for the current Retirement System 2020 reform. For example, it analysed the operating conditions of retirement in the context of demographic trends; it looked into how the planned 2nd pillar measures will affect labour costs, net salaries and employment, and it projected possible developments in the Swiss economy up to 2035, along with the related return expectations for those investment categories of importance to pension institutions. The consequences of changes to the law in the field of social security and occupational pensions are systematically evaluated both ex-ante and ex-post, and any need for adjustment is highlighted.
2. Disability / invalidity
The 4th, 5th and 6th Revisions of the Federal Law on Invalidity Insurance focused on the principle of «rehabilitation before a pension» and the rehabilitation of invalidity insurance pensioners. The measures contained in these reforms are the subject of the second multiannual invalidity research programme (FoP2-IV), which is running from 2010 until 2015. Further research and evaluation projects will focus on the assessment process, benefits to support the independence of disabled people, and measures for identifying, treating and supporting children with disorders of psychological development or adolescents and young adults with greater risk potential. Cooperation with IV (disability) partners such as unemployment insurance, social welfare, companies and the treating physicians is also analysed.
3. Family, generations and society
This broad area examines societal, economic and demographic issues from a scientific standpoint and evaluates the efficacy of measures. Topics relating to family policy as well as child, youth and generation-related topics are also examined in greater detail so as to provide information for political debate.
Two multi-year programmes are addressing youth protection: The «Youth and Violence» research activities examine selected cooperation models in the field of prevention-intervention-repression and derive recommendations. Already realised prevention programmes are evaluated, systematic knowledge basics and fundamental action recommendations are drawn up for specialists and decision-makers. The «Youth and Media» research activities involve drawing up an estimate of the need for regulation at the federal level. In addition, they examine and evaluate the possibilities and concepts for the acquisition of media competencies.
The «National Programme for Preventing and Combating Poverty» (2014–2018) focuses on the action areas «Education opportunities for children, adolescents and adults», «Social and occupational integration», «Living conditions» and «Impact assessment and monitoring». For this purpose, FSIO Research systematically documents measures and basic principles with the aim of identifying good practices and making it known to a broader group of interested players.
4. Prospects and future development of the social security system
Social insurance is part of the social security system and plays a major role in the economy. FSIO research therefore also addresses topics that extend beyond the narrower scope of social insurance. This involves issues relating to the social and economic situation of various sectors of the population as well as the examination of various forms and alternatives to the current social security system.