ABSTRACT: This article examines the potential to tackle the roots of inequality by the introduction of one or more social wealth funds. Such funds would aim to capture some of the financial gains from the private ownership of capital—a principal driver of inequality—and use the proceeds for wider community benefit, such as investment in social infrastructure. In recent decades a number of countries have introduced a variant on such funds, mostly taking the form of state-owned sovereign wealth funds resourced through the exploitation of oil, and used for a diversity of economic purposes. In contrast, the UK has failed to take the opportunity to create such funds by, for example, reinvesting the revenue from the sales of public assets. So would it be possible to build one or more such collectively owned funds in the UK, and if so, how should they be financed? As well as funding social investment and anti-inequality programmes, could such a scheme also help finance a regular Citizen’s Dividend payment or a Citizen’s Income scheme?

Stewart Lansley, “How Social Wealth Funds Could Help Tackle Inequality.” The Political Quarterly Volume 86, issue 4, 2015.

The Political Quarterly

The Political Quarterly

About Karl Widerquist

Karl Widerquist has written 982 articles.

Karl Widerquist is a Professor of political philosophy at Georgetown University-Qatar. He specializes in distributive justice—the ethics of who has what. Much of his work involves Universal Basic Income (UBI). He is a co-founder of the U.S. Basic Income Guarantee Network (USBIG). He served as co-chair of the Basic Income Earth Network (BIEN) for 7 years, and a member of the BIEN EC for 14 years. He was the Editor of the USBIG NewsFlash for 15 years and of the BIEN NewsFlash for 4 years. He is a cofounder of BIEN’s news website, Basic Income News. He is a cofounder of the journal "Basic Income Studies." Widerquist has published several books and many articles on UBI both in academic journals and in the popular media. He has appeared on or been quoted by many major media outlets, such as NPR’s On Point, NPR’s Marketplace, PRI’s the World, CNBC, Al-Jazeera, 538, Vice, Dissent, the New York Times, Forbes, the Financial Times, and the Atlantic Monthly, which called him “a leader of the worldwide basic income movement.” Most of Karl Widerquist's academic writing is available at his research website (Widerquist.com). For more information about him, see his BIEN profile (https://basicincome.org/news/2016/12/bien-profiles-karl-widerquist-co-chair/).