Saving without Barriers: Lessons from the Retirement Savings Laboratory's Pilot Projects

Accesible PDF image
Apr 2021
This document presents the Retirement Savings Laboratorys (Laboratory) main findings, lessons, and challenges from several pilot interventions aimed at promoting voluntary pension savings among independent and low-income workers in Chile, Colombia, Mexico and Peru. The interventions were implemented over four years using various tools based on behavioral economics and new technologies. The four main lessons that were obtained are: (1) Solutions linked to a source of income have a significant impact on generating voluntary savings. However, scaling them for the low-income and self-employed population is challenging; (2) Reminders are easy to scale and cost-effective, but they have little impact on saving for retirement and they dont always work; (3) Making saving easy must be accompanied by better financial and social security education; (4) Betting on voluntary retirement savings requires institutional leadership to overcome regulatory and technological barriers, as well market failures that make it difficult to implement scalable and effective savings solutions. Finally, the document offers a perspective on how to move towards a voluntary savings pillar for the entire adult population by creating a favorable regulatory environment, designing inclusive financial products, and leveraging technology to expand outreach to more people and offer simple and accessible savings channels.