Assistant Professor, Department of Economics
As Americans live longer and healthier lives, what are the implications for the current Social Security system? That’s one of the big questions Shantanu Bagchi is tackling in the classroom and in his research.
Since joining Towson University in 2014, Bagchi has published and presented on the new face of retirement and what it means to federal policies and programs.
“Social Security was originally designed to pay benefits for a limited number of years,” says Bagchi, whose work is supported by the W.E. Upjohn Institute Early Career Research Award and Towson’s College of Business and Economics Summer Support Grant Program. “We know significant differences in life expectancies have a big impact on individuals across the entire income spectrum.”
Bagchi is quick to point out that TU is one of the few undergraduate economics departments in the country with an emphasis on research.
“Compared to other undergraduate economics departments, Towson University is among the top producers of published research papers,” says Bagchi, noting that TU is ideally located for studying economics. “Each term some of the nation’s top economists from government agencies such as the Department of Treasury come to campus to present to students, and our students pursue opportunities at Washington, D.C. area think tanks.”
Bagchi appreciates the varied interests and backgrounds of his students. “TU is a true melting pot with students from all different walks of life,” he says. “Their varied experiences help us bring economic concepts to life.” As students explore the macro-economics of public finance, including programs such as Social Security, Medicare, food assistance programs and the Affordable Care Act, they often describe what program changes mean to their own families. “When students actively participate in learning, it is a more enriching experience for everyone.”
His commitment to students has led him to take a leading role in building the Quantitative Economic Analysis track in the economics program to prepare those interested in graduate studies. “We funnel students into some of the top economics programs in the country,” he explains.