Giving Compass’ Take:
• Dwyer Gunn discusses a National Bureau of Economic Research paper which finds that paying for a universal basic income would likely redirect spending to better-off families, potentially leaving low-income families worse off than they currently are.
• How can philanthropy support basic income trials with a variety of policy structures to determine the most effective and prevent gaps?
• Learn how a universal basic income could inspire other ideas.
In recent years, the concept of a universal basic income (UBI)—governments providing every single citizen with a cash transfer sufficient to ensure a minimum standard of living—has gained a diverse following in countries around the world. The concept is particularly popular among those concerned about the effects of technology and automation on employment. In fact, Y Combinator, a Silicon Valley start-up incubator, is currently funding a randomized, controlled trial of a UBI in two states.
“One reason we think it may work is that technological improvements should generate an abundance of resources,” wrote Y Combinator president Sam Altman in a blog post announcing the experiment. “Although basic income seems fiscally challenging today, in a world where technology replaces existing jobs and basic income becomes necessary, technological improvements should generate an abundance of resources and the cost of living should fall dramatically.”
Read the full article on the flaws of a universal basic income by Dwyer Gunn at Pacific Standard.
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