UBI Research

UBI Research

Money is a commons.

We are a nonpartisan, non-commercial professional association of scholars, community groups, policymakers, and entrepreneurs working towards a better monetary system. Together, we are painting a clearer picture of the possibilities of a universal basic income (UBI).

Bottom-Up Money: Fair, stable, resilient — envisioning a free market in supplier-issued basic income currencies.

We propose a decentralized system of monetary governance formed from an ecosystem of freely-formed coexisting UBI (universal basic income) currencies, each backed and governed by its own network of suppliers. The scheme creates an incentive for suppliers to issue the quantity of currency that maximizes profits while keeping their currency value stable. Since new money would be created solely through UBI, all seigniorage goes to the UBI recipients, thus removing perverse incentives for the issuing body and optimizing the money supply according to Pareto efficiency. Distribution of new money via a global UBI additionally ensures a minimum level of liquidity in currency exchange markets. Furthermore, optional features such as a demurrage rate may be set in the currencies, tailored by each issuing body as a stabilizing mechanism or determined by global consensus as a tool for taxation.

Proposal for a Decentralized Unique Identity Seeding Protocol

This proposal is based on the assumption that it is easy to fake a person, but hard to fake a city. It describes a tiered Web of Trust based on clusters formed from offline “pseudonym parties.” It produces a temporary proof of personhood (i.e. unique identity) for participants who physically attend these parties. Successful participants are known as “seeds.” This system is designed to make it as easy as possible for anyone to become a seed. Seeds are not necessarily honest, but they are unique, and thus can provide a valuable data anchor for a Self-Sovereign Identity (SSI) system that uses a social graph analysis to detect Sybils (duplicate identity attackers).

The Relative Theory of Money in Detail

The aim of this text is to present Stéphane Laborde’s relative theory of money (RTM or TRM in French) in an accessible way, without compromising on completeness and rigour. The mathematical part is written as to be accessible to secondary school students. The text starts with a general introduction to the notion of value and presents some basic economic arguments in order to prepare the reader to the concepts developed in the RTM. The theory is then presented in section 3, which makes up the core of the text.

Roadmap to a Government-Independent Basic Income (UBI) Digital Currency

Universal basic income (UBI) is enough an alien concept that it still registers as “unthinkable” for most of the world, far outside the window of discourse. Although it dates as far back as the 1500s, its tacit implausibility (“free money?”) has stymied critical examination over the past few centuries. This creates an atmosphere in which governments are particularly resistant to UBI; the political machine is notoriously slow to adopt policies that suffer from poor comprehension in the public sphere. Nonetheless, in recent years a number of government-independent efforts have emerged attempting to bring these ideas to fruition.