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Income, Work, and Wealth: UBI, Job Guarantees, Baby Bonds, and Care Work

Paper Session

Friday, Jan. 5, 2018 8:00 AM - 10:00 AM

Pennsylvania Convention Center, 202-A
Hosted By: Labor and Employment Relations Association
  • Chair: Teresa Ghilarducci, New School

Modernizing U.S. Labor Standards for 21st-Century Families

Heather Boushey
Washington Center for Equitable Growth


Women now make up almost half the U.S. workforce. Despite the central role women play in the U.S. economy, our labor laws and institutions do little to address the various ways in which women are held back at work. This not only hampers women’s economic well-being, but also has implications for U.S. productivity, labor force participation, and economic growth. In this paper, we propose policies aimed at boosting women’s economic outcomes: paid family leave, fair scheduling, and combatting wage discrimination. We show how enacting carefully designed policies in these categories will better address the challenges of today’s labor force, enhance women’s economic outcomes, and provide benefits for the national economy.

Baby Bonds and Wealth Building for the Excluded

Darrick Hamilton
New School


Whites in America have significantly higher household and individual wealth than blacks and other minorities, and persistent inequality and discrimination continue to sustain these gaps over generations. Awarding an investment to every child at birth--"baby bonds"-- would help close these gaps over time and help produce a more equitable and just society.

Universal Basic Income: Labor Market Floor or Welfare State Displacement

Richard McGahey
Institute for New Economic Thinking


Recent concerns over automation and potential labor market displacement have led some advocates to call for a universal basic income (UBI), sometimes in alliance with libertarian UBI supporters who want to reduce or dismantle the welfare state. This paper explores the pros and cons of a UBI in different versions, some of which would work in tandem with existing welfare state and labor market programs and institutions.

Universal Job Guarantee: Beyond Full Employment and Toward Institutional Change

Pavlina Tcherneva
Bard College and the Levy Economics Institute


Faced with inadequate jobs and poor labor market returns to work, advocates have called for different policies including a universal basic income, stronger unemployment insurance, and counter-cyclical employment policies. A universal job guarantee would address many of these concerns while also providing other social and economic benefits that the other options do not provide.
Andrew L. Stern
Economic Security Project
Teresa Ghilarducci
New School
JEL Classifications
  • J3 - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs