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Jeroen van der Vaart wins Jan Brouwer Thesis Award

17 December 2020
Jeroen van der Vaart
Jeroen van der Vaart

The Faculty of Economics and Business (FEB) is proud to announce that Jeroen van der Vaart has won the Jan Brouwer Thesis Award in the category "Economics". Each year the Royal Holland Society for Sciences and Humanities ( Koninklijke Hollandsche Maatschappij der Wetenschappen ) awards the best Master Theses in eight categories of Humanities and Social Sciences.

Last summer Jeroen graduated Summa Cum Laude from our Research Master programme in Economics and Business with the profile "Econometrics & Business Analytics". He is currently a PhD student at FEB in the department Economics, Econometrics and Finance. Prof. Rob Alessie , Dr Max Groneck and Dr Raun van Ooijen supervised his thesis.

Jeroen’s thesis studies the link between health inequalities and the progressivity of old-age insurance programs. High socioeconomic status households live longer and therefore collect retirement income for a longer time than low socioeconomic status households do. At the same time high socioeconomic status households are healthier over the life-cycle and therefore rely less on (public) LTC insurance. He quantifies the welfare redistribution within old-age social insurance programs, retirement programs and public long-term care provision, that results from those inequalities in LTC needs and mortality. As his principal finding, Jeroen shows that the welfare effect can be translated into almost half a year of additional overall consumption for high compared to low socioeconomic status households. A strong preference for leaving a bequest is an important explanation to why high SES households have an additional welfare gain over low SES households.

His supervisors wrote a motivation letter that emphasized his nomination: "Van der Vaart’s novel approach is to study these redistributions simultaneously and single out the welfare effect from both systems caused by the socioeconomic differences in health. Also, he takes into account the interplay between saving motives for long-term care and bequests and the redistribution of welfare."

The topic of his thesis is very relevant for policymakers in light of the aging of the Dutch population and reforms of the pension and LTC systems.

Award Ceremony

The award ceremony is planned for 11 February 2021 at KHMW’s headquarters in the Hodshon House in Haarlem or in digital form depending on the corona measures in place at the time.

Last modified:17 December 2020 09.29 a.m.

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