Niki Cleal is the Director of the Pensions Policy Institute (PPI) with overall responsibility for leading and managing the PPI. During her time at the PPI Niki has overseen the delivery of a large number of PPI research projects on state pension, private pension and public sector pension reforms as well as wider research projects on retirement income and assets. Niki is experienced in presenting research findings to a wide range of audiences and to the media.
Niki is a member of the editorial board of Pensions: An International Journal and is also a member of the Financial Reporting Council’s Actuarial User Committee. Niki was a member of Lord Hutton’s Panel of Experts on his fundamental review of the public service pensions.
Niki joined the PPI from Halifax Bank of Scotland (HBoS) where she was Research Director, on secondment from HM Treasury where she worked for 6 years. An economist by training, during her time at the Treasury Niki led two major independent reviews – the Morris Review of the Actuarial Profession and the Lambert Review of business university collaboration. At HBoS, Niki had responsibility for developing corporate position on pension policy, and leading the HBoS response to the Pensions Commission report.
Niki has a BA (Hons) Economics from Cambridge University and an MBA from INSEAD.
Chris joined the PPI as Research Director in July 2002 and is responsible for the research programme. At the PPI Chris has authored and presented a number of research reports analysing pensions (including state, private and public sector pensions), pension reforms and other provision for retirement income. Chris is experienced in presenting research findings to a wide range of audiences and to the media.
Chris started his career as an Economic Adviser at the Department of Social Security (now the Department for Work and Pensions). Work at the DSS included analytical support for the Pension Provision Group, and working on the subsequent Pensions Green Paper published in December 1998. Work at the DSS included analytical support for the Pension Provision Group, and working on the subsequent Pensions Green Paper published in December 1998.
After working as part of the Poverty and Social Exclusion Team, Chris joined the ABI as Senior Economist in August 2000, where his pension background led to work on the analysis of stakeholder pensions, the Pension Credit and annuities.
Chris has a BSc (Hons) in Economics from the University of Warwick, and an MSc in Economics from Queen Mary and Westfield College, University of London.
John has been the PPI’s Senior Policy Analyst since 2008 and he leads the quantitative analysis and modelling research. In his time at the PPI John has worked on a number of PPI modelling projects on public sector pension reform.
In addition John has led on the PPI's research into the role of housing in supporting retirement (which involved developing modelling of tenure and the size of housing wealth in the UK), and worked on research sponsored by AEGON that considered simultaneous reforms to pensions tax relief, state pensions and access to private pensions.
John joined the PPI in 2008 from Hewitt Associates. At Hewitt he worked within the Pensions Actuarial Services team, overseeing the modelling of standard and non-standard pension scheme calculations for the consultants to present to the clients.
Prior to joining Hewitt John worked for the Government Actuary's Department for 8 years in the Occupational Pensions directorate, during which time he designed their investment roll-up model and designed models for the use of other Government departments.
John has a BSc in Actuarial Mathematics and Statistics from Heriot Watt and a Post Graduate Diploma in Actuarial Management from Cass Business School.
Dr Leandro Carrera
Leandro is a Senior Policy Researcher at the PPI. Leandro joined in 2010 and has taken the lead in updating the PPI’s Pensions Primer which gives a detailed description of the current pensions system. Leandro also led the report writing for the PPI’s research into projections of future levels of pensioner poverty for Age UK. Leandro is currently leading the PPI’s research which will provide an analysis of the latest developments in the provision of pensions in the private sector.
Leandro was previously a research officer at the London School of Economics' Public Policy Group. There, he led a three-year project on the measurement of productivity in the public sector, on which he is currently finishing a book. He also led seminars and published articles on pension policy and public sector performance.
Leandro holds a Ph.D. in political science from the University of Arizona with a specialization in research methods. His Ph.D. thesis analyzed pension policy in Western Europe and Latin America. Prior to this, he worked as a consultant for the Argentine Government and in the private sector.
Melissa is a Senior Policy Researcher at the PPI. Melissa joined the PPI in October 2012 from Action on Hearing Loss where, most recently, she led a research project around hearing loss in care homes, conducted a literature review around the management of hearing loss and other long-term conditions and a review of models of hearing service provision. She was also the organisation's policy lead on social care.
Prior to this, Melissa worked as part of the Social Research Team at the Inland Revenue (now HM Revenue and Customs). Work at the Inland Revenue included the provision of research support to the Revenue Policy Team, and management of research around Self Assessment. Previously, Melissa worked in personal tax at PricewaterhouseCoopers.
Melissa has a BA (Hons) in French with International Studies from the University of Warwick, and an MSc in Social Research Methods from the University of Surrey.
Daniel joined the PPI in 2010 as the PPI’s Policy Modeller. At the PPI, Daniel is responsible for using and developing the PPI’s suite of actuarial pension models.
Daniel has undertaken the modelling for PPI research considering the implications of the Government’s decision to end compulsory annuitisation, for the PPI’s research on state pension reform for the NAPF and on projections of future levels pensioner poverty for Age UK. He was also involved in the PPI’s research for AEGON, modelling the impact of simultaneous reforms to pensions tax relief, state pensions and access to private pensions combined with potential behavioural effects.
Daniel has an MSc in Actuarial Science from Cass Business School. At Cass, in addition to studies for the Institute of Actuaries exams, he gained academic experience in a variety of modelling areas and techniques. These include Stochastic Asset and Liability modelling, Monte Carlo Simulation, multiple state transition models, and simulating the inter-dependence of random variables through Copula Modelling. Daniel is currently studying for the Actuarial Profession’s professional qualifications. firstname.lastname@example.org
Maritha is the PPI Office Manager and joined in June 2005. Her responsibilities at the PPI cover all aspects of administration, finance and event planning.
Before joining the PPI Maritha worked for a voluntary youth organisation where she worked closely with the Management Team in constructing life skill programmes for youth workshops, she also managed various projects and youth events within the organisation. Maritha started her career as a Junior Accounts Assistant at Chrysalis Music and volunteered her time to assist in the administration of a not for profit organisation.
Maritha has a FdA Business and Management qualification from Greenwich University, a NVQ3 in Business & Administration and a NVQ2 in the AAT (Association of Accounting Technicians).