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School of Social and Political Science: Staff profiles


Lynne Robertson-Rose

Lynne Robertson-Rose
Dr Lynne Robertson-Rose
1.09 Chrystal Macmillan Building 15a George Square Edinburgh UK EH8 9LD
+44 (0)131 651 1585
Research Interests
Pension policy, retirement savings behaviour, Population ageing, Behavioural responses to social and public policy (nudge effects), Ageing & equality, Housing

Guidance and Feedback Hours

  • My door is usually open so no appointment necessary but if you would like to fix a specific time please email me.

My research interests lie at the intersection between social policy, behavioural insights and personal finance and I am especially interested in how assets are accumulated throughout the life course and used to fund retirement. My main area of expertise is defined contribution pensions but I am keen to be involved in research that examines the impact of demographic ageing and financial capability.  I have a particular interest in behavioural responses to social and public policy (nudging effects) and this is reflected in my doctoral thesis. 

My PhD thesis titled Retirement Savings Behaviour in Workplace Pensions. An Examination of Responses to Default Settings in an Automatic Enrolment Environment investigated retirement savings behaviour and automatic enrolment in a FTSE100 company. The mixed methods research investigated the factors influencing whether or not individuals deviate from the default setting of their pension scheme. The study uncovered different motives underpinning individuals’ reaction to membership defaults, contribution defaults, and investment fund defaults.  Research attention focused on financial planning, social relations, and the work context. My project is the only workplace pension research to date that has investigated a homogenous group of workers at a single UK employer.  The design facilitated cross-comparison and analysis of how career development influences retirement savings behaviour.  I concluded that the employment context and insecure careers have a strong influence on how employees respond to saving for retirement


PhD, Social Policy, Edinburgh, 2016.  MSc by Research, Social Policy (Distinction), Edinburgh, 2011. MA Hons, Political Studies, Aberdeen.

Current Undergraduate Teaching (2017-18)

Social Policy and Society ( Pension Needs, Rights and Responsibilities). Social Inequality and the Life course (Poverty in Old Age). Understanding the Financial Crisis (Culture in the City). Evidence, Politics & Policy (Intergenerational Equity). Politics of the Welfare State (Housing Policy & Welfare Pluralism). Analytical Perspectives in Social Policy (Pensions).

Current Postgraduate Teaching (2017-18)

Economic Issues in Public Policy (MPP Course Convener).  Economic Issues in Public Policy ( Pensions, Taxation, Foundation Economics). Advanced Issues in Social Policy (Co-Course Convener).

Past teaching includes Political Issues in Public Policy (Course convener), Industrial Relations (for Edinburgh Business School), Managing Employment Relations (for EBS), European Social Policy. 

PhD Supervision 

Currently supervising on Chinese Pension Reform but interested in the supervision of other age-related projects.


I provide ongoing advice on behavioural insights to a Fintech retirement savings company and I am keen to have further involvement in consultancy work with the public and private sectors.

Upcoming Papers & Conference Presentations 

Robertson-Rose. Lynne (2018) Good Job Good Pension: The Influence of the Workplace on Saving for Retirement Journal of Aging & Society (In press)

British Society of Gerontology 47th Annual Conference - Ageing in an Unequal World: Shaping Environments for the 21st Century. Forthcoming July 2018  Financial Preparations for Later Life  

Topics interested in supervising

Pensions, older workers, economic perspectives, behavioural responses to social policy

If you are interested in being supervised by Lynne Robertson-Rose, please see the links below for more information:

PhD in Social Policy; MSc (R) Social Policy