Major Papers


Universal Basic Income, Canada, Poverty


This paper provides an examination of the persistent issue of poverty within Canada, recognizing the various causes and the previous attempts to solve it, before concluding that the key failure of all prior poverty reduction strategies is a focus on poverty alleviation, rather than poverty eradication. This paper suggests that an alternative method would be to implement a Universal Basic Income, presenting an examination of prior research in the field, comparing it to similar models and addressing the various criticisms that have been raised against it. Finally, this paper utilizes statistics provided by the Canadian government to determine what the impact of a UBI would be on all Canadians who report income. A simplistic model is set out with a level of $18,000 per year, and including a flat 50% tax rate, with a break-even point of $36,000. Using a model like this, Canada would ensure that no person would have an income of less than $18,000, while nearly half of all Canadians would see their incomes rise. Those who make more than the break-even point would see a manageable increase in taxes though when compared to current tax rates in Canada’s four most populated provinces, the decrease in income these individuals would see is relatively insignificant.

Primary Advisor

Jess Ovadia

Program Reader

Lydia Miljan

Degree Name

Master of Arts


Political Science

Document Type

Major Research Paper

Convocation Year