NBER Bulletin on Aging and Health

NBER Profile: Alan Gustman

Alan Gustman is a Research Associate of the NBER's programs in aging and labor studies. Gustman is the Loren M. Berry Professor of Economics at Dartmouth College, where he teaches courses in microeconomic and labor economics. Professor Gustman holds a Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Michigan and a B.A. from the City College of New York.

Professor Gustman serves on the Steering Committee of the Health and Retirement Study (HRS), a longitudinal survey of older Americans sponsored by the National Institute on Aging. >From 1996 through 2008, he was Co-Principal Investigator for the HRS. Professor Gustman also serves on the Executive Committee of the University of Michigan Retirement Research Center. He was a TIAA-CREF Institute Fellow from 2005 through 2007 and an adjunct staff member at the Rand Corporation from 2004 through 2009. He has served on numerous expert panels, including for the Social Security Administration, Bureau of Labor Statistics, and General Accounting Office.

Gustman is a member of the National Academy of Social Insurance and is the recipient of numerous research grants, including from the National Institutes of Health, Social Security Administration, and U.S. Department of Labor. In addition to publishing many scholarly articles, he has co-written two books on pensions. The most recent of these, which is co-authored by Thomas Steinmeier and Nahid Tabatabai and will be published by the Harvard University Press in May, explores a wide variety of information about pensions from HRS respondents and employer plan descriptions. The underlying data for this volume will be made available on the HRS website to facilitate and encourage further use of HRS pension data by the user community.

Some of his latest research with Steinmeier and Tabatabai examines how the recent stock market decline has affected the wealth and retirement behavior of those nearing retirement age and explores why actuarially fair retirement policies nevertheless have significant effects on retirement. Most recently, Gustman and Steinmeier have extended their structural models of retirement decision-making to incorporate innovations from recent models of individual retirement decision-making into family-based structural models. They are currently modifying their models to include the effects of imperfect information, behavioral modifications such as hyperbolic discounting, and detailed representation of the role of health.

In his spare time, Gustman and his wife Janice enjoy playing with their three grandchildren.

Alan Gustman
NBER Videos

National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138; 617-868-3900; email:

Contact Us