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Financial Fragility and the Future of Retirement Discussions

You have probably heard that 40% of Americans cannot cover a $400 emergency expense, or that about half of Americans are not saving anything for their retirement, or, which might be worse, that there is a shame in our society associated with talking about finances and money.

Yet financial fragility and the future of retirement are some of the most fundamental areas of not only individual, but also public concern. So early this Fall, IF partnered with Elizabeth White, author of 55, Underemployed, and Faking Normal, IONA, and the D.C. Public Libraries to launch an IF discussion/book-club series focusing on the issues of financial fragility and the future of retirement.

We have begun two parallel discussion series at two D.C. public libraries. Each began with talks about financial fragility and the future of retirement by Elizabeth White. She brought up issues she had already shared in a PBS episode and a TED talk. We then broke down into small group IF conversations and explored not only questions and concerns raised by White’s talks, but also some of the personal financial problems and social concerns that our participants have.

The series will continue through the Fall. Each time we will meet, IF facilitators will help the groups to explore questions and concerns about financial fragility and the future of retirement.

These are important conversations, but we are not going to conclude them. One of our goals in this discussion series is to launch what Elizabeth White calls ‘resilience circles’, and to encourage the participants to carry on conversations of their own.

If you want to join one of these conversations, or learn about other IF conversations, find us on Facebook or email us directly.



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