Aegon has teamed up with the University of Edinburgh on a two-year project to look at ways of improving financial wellbeing in the UK.
The pension provider has entered a Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) with the Edinburgh Futures Institute and the Business School at the University of Edinburgh to develop a new approach to financial engagement.
The two-year project will see experts from Aegon and the university join together to look into how changing people’s behaviour can help them improve their relationship with money.
Aegon’s centre for behavioural research will work with academics from the university’s business school to use neuroscience and other insights to better understand how financial wellbeing is linked to people developing a more concrete picture of their future selves.
Andy Manson, chief marketing officer at Aegon, said: “We’re delighted to be working with the University of Edinburgh on this KTP, bringing new skills and latest academic thinking to create better financial wellbeing in the UK.
“Aegon has a clear sense of purpose to help the UK achieve a lifetime of financial security and supporting people to feel more in control of their future is a key driver.
“The aim of the project is to get people thinking about their relationship with money on a whole new level. Having a tool that helps customers picture their future selves will be transformational in helping them engage with their long-term savings.”
According to the provider, if people are able to visualise their future self, they are able to develop a more complete picture of the life they want and not only in a financial sense.
The more able they are to imagine this future self, the more likely they are to change their current behaviour, Aegon said.
The provider is also a founding corporate partner of the Initiative for Financial Wellbeing (IFW) , where it aims to improve financial wellbeing and show the value of financial advice.
Prof Gbenga Ibikunle, director for industry, economy and society at the University of Edinburgh's Edinburgh Futures Institute, said: “Improving financial wellbeing is one our main focus areas, and we are therefore excited to partner with Aegon to help create the tools and interventions that will ultimately help millions of their customers better plan for their financial futures.
“Prof Tina Harrison, the main UoE lead on the project, is a leading authority on financial wellbeing, financial education and customer experience and she has collaborated extensively with many organisations in the sector. I have no doubt that this partnership will bring some really innovative solutions to customers.’’
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