Fisher Center Talk Looks at U.S. Social Security as an International Women’s Issue – Hobart and William Smith Colleges \
The HWS Update

Fisher Center Talk Looks at U.S. Social Security as an International Women’s Issue

What is the fuss about U.S. Social Security and why is it an international women’s issue? Zdravka Todorova, this year's Fisher Center pre-doctoral fellow, will answer these questions in a talk titled “The Myth of U.S. Social Security Crisis and Its Importance for Women around the World” at 5 p.m. on Tuesday, March 8, in the Fisher Center, Demarest Hall room 212. Co-sponsored with William Smith Dean’s Office, this event is timed to correspond with International Women’s Day (March 8).

As a feminist economist Todorova will discuss not only the importance of Social Security for American women, but also warn that framing the debate narrowly in financial terms influences the tone in policy formulation internationally. She will look at various economic studies and financial projections for Social Security, and critically examine the “privatization” proposals and the “lock-box” approach to “saving” the program. Todorova argues that dismantling Social Security would represent a political shift away from intergenerational assurance commitment with potential negative consequences for securing women’s rights and health internationally.

She is a doctoral candidate in economics from the University of Missouri-Kansas City (UMKC). Her research explores gender assumptions behind theories of public finance and money, as well as their consequences for policy formulation, and she is interested in the interrelation between household finances and activities such as unpaid labor, paid labor and consumption.

Todorova has a B.S. in agribusiness economics from Plovdiv University in Bulgaria and an M.A. in economics from UMKC. The fellowship that brought her to the Colleges is supported by the Provost's and the President's offices in an effort to enhance the study of global concerns in a way that is consistent with the Colleges' mission to provide interdisciplinary and gender-coordinate education.

International Women's Day is a world-wide event to celebrate and support the social and political rights and advances of women workers whether in or outside the home. It is traditionally celebrated on March 8 with discussion groups, exhibitions, marches, rallies, etc.

The Fisher Center, founded in 1998 with a $1 million gift from Emily and Richard Fisher, seeks to foster mutual understanding and social justice in contemporary gender issues. Fisher Center pre-doctoral fellows teach one course per semester, attend Fisher Center lectures and meetings, and present one colloquium.