For Work / Against Work
Debates on the centrality of work

"Universal basic income and skill-biased technological change"

by Coelho, José (2020)


In the last decades, income inequality has been on the rise in the U.S. The growing skill premium suggests the pivotal role of skill-biased technological change (SBTC) in promoting the observed increase in inequality levels. In this context, labor income tax structures have been central to the policy debate. I develop an overlapping generations model to perform a welfare evaluation of Universal basic income (UBI) tax structures and verify how these interact with SBTC. I find that an UBI system would have improved social welfare in 2010 when compared to the existing tax system and determine that this result is primarily motivated by SBTC.


Income Inequality, Skill Premium, Optimal Taxation, Universal Basic Income



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