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[DRAFT] Last updated on September 18, 2020

Policy Futures Network (PFN) is a “coming together” of experts to share, assess, and develop smart, coherent, and transparent long-term policy ideas and frameworks on Key Topics.

To start, PFN will gather, develop, and share policy research, ideas, frameworks, and other content on two Key Topics: Lifetime Economic Wellbeing and Retirement Security. To support these priority topics, PFN has established specific webpages to provide access to the PFN-relevant policy research, ideas, and other content.

PFN will also collect, develop, and share policy content on topics that PFN has not yet decided to treat as a priority – known as Other Topics. Examples include biotechnology, climate change, education, and health. (Not an exclusive list.) As PFN moves forward, PFN will consider whether to treat one or more of these Other Topics as Key Topics.

See the About PFN page for more information about PFN audiences, Memberships, content, and Project Teams.

Key Topics

  • Lifetime Economic Security focuses on key policy issues and frameworks addressing the major challenges, risks, and solutions that individuals and families face over their lifetimes with respect to maintaining income and other resources sufficient to support a standard of living. It covers a wide range of topics, including employment, wages/income, education/training, housing, health, emergencies and other challenges and risks to economic security.
  • Retirement Security focuses on key policy issues and frameworks addressing the major challenges, risks, and solutions that individuals and families face in their later years of life. These later years are typically labeled as “retirement” years, even though they may include paid and unpaid work. This key topic covers topics such as Social Security, Medicare, private retirement plans (including pension and 401(k) plans), retirement accumulations (e.g., savings and benefits), timing of retirement, de-accumulation of savings and benefits, expense patterns, continued full- or part-time paid work, unpaid work, health, long-term care, inflation, mortality, and longevity.

Other Topics

  • Biotechnology addresses key policy issues and frameworks regarding the use and modification of living systems and organisms to develop or make products for humans.  Biotechnology has applications in a wide range of areas, including medicine, agriculture, industrial uses of crops and products, and environmental uses. Key issues involve the assessment and management of risks arising from such use and modification of living systems and organisms and the appropriate policies and regulations to manage these risks and promote human wellbeing.
  • Climate Change addresses key policy issues and frameworks addressing greenhouse gases and global warning, including approaches to reduce or eliminate the emission of greenhouse gases (e.g., carbon tax, regulation of technologies and emissions), to reduce the carbon in the atmosphere, and to adapt to global warming (e.g, forest, coastline, and disaster management)
  • Education covers key policy issues and frameworks relating to the goals, design, operation, and financing of education systems by federal and state governments, individuals and families, other organizations (e.g., businesses), and communities (e.g., religious and other affinity groups). Education includes early childhood education, K through 12, two- and four-year colleges and universities, community colleges, graduate and professional education, adult education, job training and re-training, corporate or business education, in-person and remote/online education, internships, and on-the-job training. And it covers government funding, corporate and business funding, tax policy, and other financing approaches to education systems, schools, and courses.
  • Health encompasses key policy issues and frameworks relating to the goals, design, and operation of systems, programs, and activities aimed at providing a range of healthcare goals. Health policies relate to public health, mental health, healthcare services, insurance, personal healthcare, drugs and pharmaceuticals, research, innovation, work and employment, financing, delivery, access, cost, quality, equity, government programs (e.g., Medicare and Medicaid), corporate or business plans, and individual plans.
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