Basic incomes have been shown to boost work, productivity and incomes, which foster taxable income and lower social costs, as well as increase mental and physical health. But how great are those effects?
Guy Standing, a professorial research associate from the School of Oriental and African Studies at the University of London is a long-time proponent of basic income.
In this piece, Standing shares his findings on the basic income debate drawn from his involvment in four pilots in four continents. He comments that it will take acts of courage to move forward decisively.
Some of the key insights:
In Canada and the United States, basic income pilots were spread across both countries and showed favorable results. Results indicated that basic income enabled people to acquire housing and led to increased work in places like Tennessee. Similar sentiment for basic income has been felt across Europe, Asia and Africa, where the debate on basic income has moved into mainstream policymaking. How will governments make progress on basic income?
- Focus on building permanent capital funds, which dividends as basic income can be paid.
- Gradually raise dividends and grow the fund.
- Link basic income to assets or the ‘commons.’ The developments have opened doors to policies around social or common dividends, whereby natural resources exploited for commercial gain owe dividends to commoners.