Is universal basic income a viable way to support humans in the face of technological change? As technology advances, fewer jobs require human labor. Governments from Canada to Finland are experimenting with a universal basic income scheme as a way to ensure that their constituents maintain some level of economic security, even in the face of shrinking employment opportunities. Meanwhile, a pilot study in Kenya is testing whether universal basic income can be an effective way to lift citizens out of poverty. Can guaranteeing everyone a minimum amount of money reduce or prevent poverty? What effect will a universal basic income have on the overall economy?
Based at MIT, J-PAL is a network of economists who have run over 800 randomized controlled trials in more than 80 countries to ensure that policy is informed by scientific evidence. Alison Fahey, Senior Policy Manager at J-PAL Global, shares insights from some of these randomized controlled trials that can help shed light on what we know and don't know about the possible impacts of universal basic income schemes.
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