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Pursuing Potential


In Evolutionary Pension Structures



As institutional investors cope with low interest rates and many pension funds face insurmountable funding gaps, moving beyond innovations that remain rooted in today’s mainstream structures can be a hard challenge. Consumer behaviors are changing, as are employment & retirement patterns. Technologies and communities have irrupted that will significantly alter the investment industry. In fact, boundaries between industries, products and geographies altogether are fading away. 


Well-versed experts in asset management, retirement systems and emerging technologies, the authors assess the current landscape, take note of investors’ agendas and look far ahead at a future that might seem generations away – if at all possible. Yet this paper is no esoteric exercise. By zooming in on currently thriving niches, presenting real world examples and laying bare severe societal transformations, it becomes clear that radically modified, digitally driven asset management is at the dawn of wide deployment.


Industry leaders are urged to prudently experiment in this field. Not only will the negative correlation gained by doing so offer benefits to portfolio risk management, the traditional incumbents also have a unique opportunity in leading society towards greater economic inclusion…

Related recent work

One of our authors, Mr. Harry Smorenberg, is a member of the World Economic Forum’s Project Expert Committee on global retirement systems. The May 2017 WEF white paper “We’ll Live to 100 – How Can We Afford It?” recently received broad news coverage across the globe. Highlighting the major pension issues facing the world today, it fits perfectly with our current work. The WEF materials are available for download here.

We are honoured to debut a short article on our paper at Pensions & Investments, a leading institutional investment publication catering to a global audience of thought leaders in the sector. The article is available for download here.

About The Authors

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David Lee Kuo Chuen

David Lee Kuo Chuen is a Professor of Fintech and Blockchain at the Singapore University of Social Sciences. He was a visiting Fulbright Scholar at Stanford University in 2015. He founded the hedge fund group Ferrell Asset Management and was a pioneer of the Asian REITS industry, and has a research interest in how financial technology will transform global financial services. He is on the board of listed companies and charitable organisations. He consults for financial institutions, works closely with startups and founded Left Coast and Infocorp recently. He received his BSc (Econs), MSc and PhD from the London School of Economics and Political Science. He has edited and written five books on Asia Finance, Blockchain and Digital Currency.

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Harry Smorenberg

Harry Smorenberg is the CEO of Smorenberg Corporate Consultancy founder of the World Pension Summit and founder & Chairman of the European & Global Payment Summits. A financial services marketing and positioning strategist, he previously worked at Banque Paribas and ABN AMRO and was a director at two leading strategic consultant firms. Harry holds advisory and board memberships at various (inter)national financial services organizations and universities; he is a Member of the International Board of Advisors of the Global Financial Literacy Excellence Center (GFLEC) / George Washington School of Business – Washington, USA, Member of the International Advisory Board of the Europe China Institute, Member of the Board of Advisors of NIBUD (National Institute for Family Finance Information), Adjunct Professor at Joint Innovation Center for Social Management of Urban and Rural Communities in Hubei Province at Zhongnan University in Wuhan, China. Member of the Council of Scholars and member of the International Advisory Board for the Center for Retirement Initiatives at McCourt School of Public Policy, Georgetown University, Washington and International Expert at CAFF50 (China Ageing Finance Forum): China’s national ‘think-tank’ on financial wellbeing, pensions and all ageing related issues

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Michel Uitermarkt

Michel Uitermarkt started his career as a financial analyst at Morgan Stanley Investment Management. Currently independent, Michel spent more than five years as a manager at OC&C Strategy Consultants.
Michel holds an MSc in finance & investments from RSM Erasmus University.

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Tim Wanders

Tim Wanders is a technology entrepreneur. As the founder of a mobile end-to-end B2B and B2C gig economy platform, Tim has seen the power of disruptive technology in full effect and from every angle.
Tim holds an MSc in finance & investments from the VU Amsterdam.


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