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Basic Income Studies

Ed. by Haagh, Anne-Louise / Howard, Michael

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Cost, Compensation, Freedom, and the Basic Income – Guaranteed Jobs Debate

Michael Lewis
Published Online: 2012-12-31 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/bis-2013-0008


In this volume Harvey argues that guaranteeing people the right to work would be a better policy approach than guaranteeing people an unconditional basic income. This is because a guaranteed job would provide many of the benefits that a basic income would but at far lower cost. I argue that Harvey’s analysis of the relative cost differences between guaranteeing one a job or an income is misleading if not flat out wrong in some places. I also argue that there is one benefit that BI could promote that his jobs strategy, at least as presented in the paper in this volume, could not – the right of an able-bodied person to lead the kind of life they desire even if they desire not to sell their labor.

Keywords: basic income; job guarantee; economic security


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About the article

Published Online: 2012-12-31

Citation Information: Basic Income Studies, ISSN (Online) 1932-0183, ISSN (Print) 2194-6094, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/bis-2013-0008.

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