1Cornelius Adablah (PhD) | 2David Ackah (PhD) | 3Amina Sammo
In recent months, there has been much discussion worldwide about a concept or an idea known as Universal Basic Income or UBI. This term that captures the provision of a basic income to all citizens of a country irrespective of their income or nature of work is thought to be the answer to the increasing concern about automation taking away jobs as well as the solution to the ever-widening inequalities and disparities between the top wealth earners and those at the bottom of the income and wealth pyramid. Indeed, while the concept of a UBI has been around at least in the West since the end of the Second World War and the advent of the Welfare State in Europe, it has gained traction in recent years so much so that countries such as Norway, Sweden, and Finland or the Scandinavian countries have either held referenda to gauge popular support or have already implemented it in some basic form on a trial basis in some cities and towns. Economic growth (or GDP growth) should not be considered the only barometer to gauge the well-being of a state. How much wealth a society generates is no longer the only important parameter. How this wealth is distributed amongst the different strata of the population is also equally important, if not more. The question of distribution of wealth has been present since the time of Adam Smith himself. However, during that time there wasn’t enough data available to understand the magnitude of problems that social inequality causes. The data and tools for analysis have been made available to the economists of late. The results have only affirmed that social equality is a desirable characteristic of an economy. This feature is a fundamental ingredient in creating a society which provides a good standard of living to its individuals.
Keywords: Universal Basic Income, and Economic Inequality