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The Low Road to Basic Income? Tax-Benefit Integration in the UK

  • BILL JORDAN (a1)

Reform of the tax-benefit system is on the political agenda in the UK, following the election of a coalition government in May 2010. The proposals for a partial integration of the two systems, set out by the Centre for Social Justice in 2009, and endorsed by the new Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, have some features of a basic income scheme. This article explores some of the common origins of the basic income principle and the ideas informing the ‘Big Society’, and examines how both traditions opposed the social insurance approach to income maintenance. It asks whether this new reform initiative will discredit basic income, or usher in the principle by the back door.

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Journal of Social Policy
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  • EISSN: 1469-7823
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