Financial Security Program

The Aspen Institute Financial Security Program’s (Aspen FSP) mission is to illuminate and solve the most critical financial challenges facing American households and to make financial security for all a top national priority. We aim for nothing less than a more inclusive economy with reduced wealth inequality and shared prosperity.

We believe that transformational change requires innovation, trust, leadership, and entrepreneurial thinking. Aspen FSP galvanizes a diverse set of leaders across the public, private, and nonprofit sectors to solve the most critical financial challenges. We do this through deep, deliberate private and public dialogues and by elevating evidence-based research and solutions that will strengthen the financial health and security of financially vulnerable Americans.

The Aspen Institute Financial Security Program aims to:

  • Make Americans’ financial security a top national priority
  • Galvanize leaders across sectors and disciplines
  • Innovate and advance bold policy and market solutions
  • Amplify important voices and insights to marshal the forces of change
  • Build bipartisan consensus for federal, state, and marketplace action

To achieve this we:

  • Connect networks of leaders across sectors and disciplines
  • Inspire creative and unconventional thinking
  • Synthesize knowledge and data to find the best ideas
  • Advance promising policy and market solutions
  • Cultivate enlightened leadership to fuel progress


Every day, more than 50 million Americans live in or near financial crisis. Financial instability has gone mainstream, threatening our economy and our democracy.

  • Widening wealth gaps based on age, education and race
  • Low- and moderate-income families lost two decades of wealth
  • Wages and living standards have stagnated
  • The median wealth of black households is one-tenth that of whites’
  • Women’s wealth is one-third that of men’s
  • College debt has reached record highs
  • Too many Americans have no retirement savings or pensions
  • Nearly 1 in 2 adults could not pay an unexpected $400 expense

But these problems are solvable. We can improve financial security for millions of Americans.