Academic and in-depth reading

A Basic Income for Canadians: What Would Change? (2017) Income security expert John Stapleton explores how a basic income would change the lives of four fictional Canadians in real-life circumstances.

A basic right (2016) Basic income: A once radical idea has practically gone mainstream. Will our courts be tempted to embrace it?

A failure to communicate: What (if anything) can we learn from the negative income tax experiments? (2005): A paper on the 1960s and 1970s experiments of basic income in the United States and Canada.

A Guaranteed Annual income: From Mincome to the Millennium (2001): A review of the Manitoba Mincome guaranteed income experiment of the 1970s, one of several in North America around that time, the only one in Canada and the only experiment with a site (Dauphin, MB) in which an entire community was studied; the paper explores how the main findings are relevant for the 21st century.

A wider lens: an analysis of Kesselman's view of a basic income (2016): Sheila Regehr, Chairperson of BICN, provides a detailed critique of Canadian economist Jonathan Rhys Kesselman's non-support of basic income.

Basic Income - A Radical Proposal for a Free Society and a Sane Economy (2017) Philippe Van Parijs and Yannick Vanderborght present the most comprehensive defense of this radical idea so far, advocating it as our most realistic hope for addressing economic insecurity and social exclusion in the twenty-first century.

Basic Income: An Anthology of Contemporary Research (2013): A book containing a “compilation of six decades of Basic Income literature. It includes the most influential empirical research and theoretical arguments on all aspects of the Basic Income proposal.”

Basic Income and Gender Equality: Reflections on the Potential for Good Policy in Canada (2014): This paper explains why basic income in Canada is not a radical leap of faith, setting basic income within its national income security and political context.

Basic Income Canada Network's Submission to the House of Commons Finance Committee Pre-Budget Consultations (2016)

Basic Income: Economic Security for All Canadians (1999): Though the financial costing data is now dated, this book (available via Amazon) remains relevant by presenting essential context for basic income in Canada.

Basic income guarantee and healthy minimum wage go hand in hand (2016) Toni Pickard, a co-founder of the Kingston Action Group for a Basic Income Guarantee, argues for why both basic income and livable minimum wage laws are needed.

Basic Income: Rethinking Social Policy (2016): Edited by Alex Himelfarb (former Clerk of the Privy Council) and Trish Hennessy, this report by the Canadian Centre of Policy Alternatives offers a range of highly informed views about basic income, some strongly in support of basic income, others strong against, others in the middle.

Basic income risks leaving people worse off – but only if it’s badly designed (2016) Toni Pickard and the Kingston Action Group for a Basic Income Guarantee describe their view on a properly structured basic income design.

Basic Income Studies: Links to subscription access to this academic journal, published twice a year.

Basic Income: What and How (2016): A thoughtful essay by Terrance Hunsley on the question "what good could we accomplish with a basic income guarantee and how could we put it in place?"  Hunsley is a Senior Fellow of the Pearson Centre for Progressive Policy and editor of the International Social Policy Monitor.

Cash Transfers and Temptation Goods: A Review of Global Evidence (2014): This World Bank report concluded that "[a]lmost without exception, studies find either no significant impact or a significant negative impact of [cash] transfers on temptation goods [e.g., alcohol, tobacco]....A growing number of studies from a range of contexts therefore indicate that concerns about the use of cash transfers for alcohol and tobacco consumption are unfounded."

Cash Transfers Evidence Paper (2011): A detailed assessment of socio-economic evidence from cash transfer programs in the global South, “cash transfers” being approximations of basic income.

Designing a Basic Income Guarantee for Canada (2016) Economists Robin Boadway, Katherine Cuff and Kourtney Koebel show how a sizable basic income for adults could be funded largely if not solely on the basis of converting a number of existing refundable tax credits and many non-refundable tax credits into a basic income.

Economic Security in the Twenty-First Century – Guaranteed Annual Income (GAI): An ecological, democratic, justice and food security imperative (2009): A Master’s paper by Richard Pereira, exploring the rationale for, history of and funding options for basic income.

Ending Poverty: A Basic Income for All Canadians (2002): Another book-length treatment of basic income within the Canadian policy context; the author is presently (2016) a provincial minister in the Government of Quebec.

How do families who receive the CCTB and NCB spend the money? (2015): This short paper on how Canadian families spend child benefits states that "[p]oliticians continue to debate whether families can be trusted to spend unconditional transfers 'responsibly', or whether policy-makers are better off providing targeted transfer income that directs spending to certain areas. Our results imply that unconditional transfers are very well-spent: families appear to be using the income to enhance education and health production for children, and to improve the general living conditions of the family."

"More Normal Than Welfare": The Mincome Experiment, Stigma, and Community Experience (2016): An in-depth examination of the 1970s Manitoba Basic Annual Income Experiment (Mincome), with key findings including that Mincome did not produce social stigma.

Submission to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Finance (2013): In this paper presented to Canadian parliamentarians as part of the Finance Committee's pre-budget consultations, distinguished economist Robin Boadway of Queen's University makes a case for converting non-refundable tax credits to refundable credits, thus to effect a major stepping stone towards a full basic income (also see the Simpson and Stevens paper, referenced immediately below).

The Impact of Converting Non-refundable Tax Credits Into Refundable Credits (2015): In this scholarly paper, Wayne Simpson and Harvey Stevens of the University of Manitoba demonstrate how converting certain non-refundable tax credits into refundable credits would be "a modest but effective step to deliver benefits to low-income households in the fashion of a guaranteed annual income" (also see the Boadway paper, referenced immediately above).

The Political Analysis of Universal Basic Income (2015): A PhD dissertation by Jurgen De Wispelaere (a member of the Board of Directors of BICN) which explores the political and administrative feasibility of basic income, i.e., how to translate basic income from worthy general idea to tangible policy implementation.

The Psychological Aspects of the Guaranteed Income (1966): A compelling essay by the eminent psychologist Erich Fromm.

The Town With No Poverty (2011): In this paper economist Evelyn Forget explains the Manitoba Mincome experiment of the 1970s and identifies key findings stemming from her painstaking analysis of archival data.

Towards a Guaranteed Livable Income (2017): A well-written briefing note from Citizens for Public Justice

Universal Basic Income and the Cost Objection: What Are We Waiting For? (2015): A peer-reviewed paper in the World Economic Review, in which Richard Pereira identifies numerous options for finding or generating the revenue required to support a universal basic income in Canada.

Welfare in Canada 2013 (2014): This report details the inadequacies and complexity of social assistance in different jurisdictions across Canada. It helps in understanding why a basic income could provide a better alternative.

Working Through the Work Disincentive (undated): a rebuttal by Chandra Pasma to the belief that basic income weakens labour market participation.