Universal Basic Income: Reconsidering the Administrative Factor
This paper questions the facile manner in which advocates of an unconditional basic income assert the superiority of their scheme because of its capacity to significantly economize on administration. While this claim is not entirely without merit, we argue that basic income scholars need to be more forthcoming in acknowledging that such an assessment requires a more direct and systematic administrative analysis than has hitherto been undertaken. In this paper we first provide an administrative framework that allows us to assess a variety of implementation challenges facing welfare schemes, and then apply the framework to the specific case of an universal, unconditional and individualized basic income scheme. A public administration focus allows us to better appreciate the many hard choices that basic income advocates face when implementing their preferred policy.
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