During the Spring and Fall courses of 2016, in total eight groups of students engaged in small research projects, each examining a different aspect of the basic income proposal. Student projects were presented and discussed at a special workshop, before finalizing the reports. You can download presentation slides and final report for each project below.
Basic Income and Paternalism (download report)
Authors: Vesa Hanninen, Matleena Haukkala, and Alexandre Malenfant
Abstract: Basic Income is often presented as a potential radical shift in the usage of paternalism in social policies. The dissatisfying results and high cost of maintenance of current welfare state policies have enhanced the appeal of the Basic Income in many governments. As a Basic Income would entail a newfound governmental trust in citizens on their social and spending behaviour, the more paternalistic aspects of social policies would have to be revised. Therefore, when analyzing the implementation or outcomes of a Basic Income scheme, it is important to conceptualize its effect on the changing nature of paternalism by incorporating in our analyses: concepts, analytical tools and previous empirical evidences of the outcomes of a Basic Income scheme. In our essay, we will provide the reader with a deeper perspective on different conceptions and degrees of paternalism and their subsequent use in the context of a Basic Income. At first, we will discuss the term of paternalism itself and we will provide an analytical tool to categorize the degree towards which a Basic Income could be either paternalistic or non-paternalistic. Secondly, we will describe the differences between in-kind benefits and cash transfers and the way cash transfers promotes trust in individuals and families to make the choices that will be the most beneficial for them. Finally, we will provide empirical evidences of the outcomes of conditional and unconditional cash transfers in Basic Income tests and policies that have been done in developing countries and argue that the freedom provided by an unconditional cash transfers might promote entrepreneurial risks and create the conditions for escaping the poverty cycle.
Basic Income and Gender Equality in Parenting (download report)
Authors: Keandra Ebron, Elina Heikkila, Eeva Karjalainen, Pauliina Kivineva, and Teemu Sernola
Abstract: It is often said by scholars that implementing a Universal Basic Income will erase gendered divisiveness in labor markets, the familial sphere, and childcare. In many cases, the principles of Universalism are overtones of Basic Income yet structural discrepancies often outweigh its benefits. Traditional gender roles and norms for women complicate this issue, thus, perpetuating a cycle of gendered divisiveness. Yet through our research, we have come to understand that the issue of women’s liberation does not specifically draw its conclusion from the introduction of a universal basic income. The introduction of new care legislation and parental leave models (such as the triple six model) under the Universal Basic Income Model encourage women to step out of the domesticated sphere and into new avenues of independence. Monetary stipends have also contributed to the success of women in their contribution to market economies and adequate preparation of their children in the classroom and beyond. While our research paper may not offer concrete methods to end gender inequality, new universalist practices pave the way for new conversations to be held.
Green Basic Income (download report)
Authors: Meeri Makimattila, Viivi Laurila, Ilona Vaharautio and Minea Koskinen
Abstract: Can basic income be considered “green”? The essay examines how basic income is related to post-productivism and sustainable development. According to critics of economic growth and the proponents of sustainable development it is necessary to elaborate new policies and approaches to find sustainable way of living. BI scientists have searched the relation between basic income and greenness. It seems that BI as itself is not green but the greenness of BI depends of the policies and funding models it is combined with.
Basic Income and Depression (download report)
Authors: Jasmin Chamberlain, Klara Huskova, Janika Kunnari, and Kalle Laakso
Abstract: This work brings up the question of a link between economic situation and mental health problems, especially depression. Economic situation is both a universal and subjective matter, but we’ve decided to focus on the subjective side – the correlation between unemployment and depression, stigmatization and employer’s prejudice and the pressure caused by uncertain income. Depression is observed through its impact on one’s ability to take care of themselves, their family and everyday responsibilities.
We go from presenting the effects of depression to one’s everyday life and economic situation to the possibilities of Basic Income; the economic, social and health-related changes it could provide. Finally, we share our suggestions on what kind of a Basic Income model would best help those suffering from depression. Our conclusion is that a universal, individual, unconditional monetary design with a possibility of complementary assistance would be the most suitable, along with the notion that Basic Income should probably be paid once a month or even every two weeks considering the impacts of depression.
Basic Income and Youth (download report)
Authors: Jere Jantunen, Henna Luoma-Halkola, Joni Salmela and Iiris Suomela
Abstract: In the wake of the upcoming basic income experiment there has been wide public debate about how basic income would potentially influence young people, and whether they should be excluded from the experiment and also in general from receiving basic income. The purpose of our group work was to critically assess these claims, and scrutinize how basic income could potentially influence social inclusion of young people, especially with regard to work. Based on a small-scale literature review and our own reflection it is argued that young people are motivated and value work and education highly. Thus, we find no support for the concerns entailing that unconditionality of benefits would make young people more passive. Furthermore, the current system of sanctions has created problems for young people in difficult life situations. It is also suggested that mere conditionality of benefits could not anyway solve the problems of the small number of young people with a prolonged NEET-status. Considering these points, we propose various ways in which basic income could in fact enhance social inclusion with regard to work among young people.
Basic Income and Deservingness (download report)
Authors: Martti Ketola, Saara Laukkanen, Helena Lavikainen and Nelli Perttula
Abstract: From time to time, a window of opportunity opens, when new social reforms have a chance of coming up to public discussions and possibly being implemented. For the reforms to become a reality there are three things needed: 1. Right timing 2. Political power and 3. Public support that can be reached through successful framing of the issue. In this document, relating to the last requirement, we will be focusing the question of deservingness and earned entitlements. To be precise the questions we ask are: 1. how people see other’s moral and the impact of universal income on other’s actions and 2. how someone’s own situation affects their views on basic income and if basic income, as a universal income within a country, is as something that is deserved by everyone. However, before diving down to those questions, we start with the concept of framing, contextualisation and importance of them.
Would the Implementation of Basic Income Lead to the Phenomenon of Welfare Magnet in Finland? (download report)
Authors: Saki Kudo, Marjukka Monni, Linda Rajamäki, Laura Toropainen, and Laura Virtanen
Abstract: Migration is a very current issue in the world today and people´s opinions about migration can be sometimes very strong or sharp. That is why we were interested in researching the connection between migration and basic income. We settled on focusing on the term welfare magnet and the question of would implementing basic income in Finland make the state more appealing to immigrants. We based are conclusion to scientific articles and found that the term welfare magnet has some problems, which also reflect to basic income.
The Effects of Universal Basic Income on Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (download report)
Authors: Arseniy Lobanovskiy, Matias Heikkilä, Essi Vallbacka
Abstract: Basic Income has been debated by scholars coming from a broad spectrum of disciplines in social sciences in the course of past several decades. It is safe to say that the controversy around Basic Income concept and its varieties is saturated with relatively straightforward as well as some which are less so arguments in support and against the proposal. Nowadays we can define potential benefits and flipsides, as well as predict longterm consequences of putting Basic Income policy in place yet, apart from general theory, gray areas regarding outcomes of Basic Income implementation remain to be explored. What has been largely left on the outskirts of the discussion is the question of Basic Income effects on small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). In our report we review existing literature on the subject and demonstrate that it is incomplete, limited in content and detalization and clearly requires further expansions to be made. We outline intuitions surrounding the subject from sociological, political science and economic perspectives, connect it to the general debate and the Finnish Basic Income Experiment, and identify relevant directions for future research.