Prospective Health Impacts of a Universal Basic Income: Evidence From Community Engagement in South Tyneside, UK

Neil Howard, Grace Gregory, Elliott Aidan Johnson, Cleo Goodman, Jonathan Coates, Kate E. Pickett, Matthew T Johnson

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Studies have suggested that Universal Basic Income (UBI) has the capacity to have substantial health benefits across the population at national level. Multiple impact pathways have recently been theorized and there are calls for trials to explore these pathways empirically. However, very limited research has taken place at local levels to explore potential context-specific effects, or how these could play out in economic, social, and behavioral changes. In order to examine these and to think through potential issues and unintended consequences, we brought together Citizen Engagement groups in Jarrow, South Tyneside, in the North East of England to explore local people’s expectations and positions on the development of UBI policies and pilots prior to their implementation. We found that people’s expectations around the potential beneficial health impacts of UBI on their communities mapped strongly onto academically theorized impact pathways. They also extended these in meaningful ways. Our findings add to the literature around UBI and health and provide important insights for the future development of empirical, health focused, UBI research.
Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Social Determinants of Health and Health Services
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 4 Apr 2024

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