How the UBI simulation game works

This article shares some of the news from creating the alpha version of the UBI game.

The general set-up

As you see from the diagram above the game engine(which holds the logic and processes the inputs) and the graph engine (which displays trends resulting from decisions) are designed to be used in a business game-like setting where teams have to make decisions at each round of the game.

In order to offer the teams (and working public) appealing enough decisions we need to have the engine work in a basic way.

So before we look at decision points we can look at the underlying logic of the game by doing some demonstration runs of the simulation. These are the main logic points.

  • UBI is paid to all over 20 in full and all under 20 at 50%
  • No tax is levied on UBI
  • UBI comes out of the social budget
  • If you have a job your employer pays the UBI which is taxed normally
  • VAT can increased slightly to partly cover the added cost of UBI
  • Taxes on work can be modified too
  • Teams get to decide on, at each round,
    • Size of UBI, VAT and Tax on work
    • Size of wages
    • If they want to work or get UBI directly
    • Popularity
    • Number of government workers
Demonstration run, raise UBI And VAT

In this demonstration run, UBI and VAT are raised by 25% and 15% respectively. As you can see, in the bottom left graph, social costs are replaced by UBI to about 60%. At the same time, because of the increase in VAT, overall state income rises.

The top left graph shows how UBI rises to about 60% of the spending power of the average worker after tax, and the average worker’s spending power reduces. In the top right graph we see how UBI rises to surpass minimum living costs and reached to 75% + of average spending power.

Numbers in work

The above diagram is a graph following numbers in work. In this run we decreased employment by 3% per round. Youth is people 20 and under and we assume they are not in the workforce for simplicity of the game.

Demo run random figures, government perspective employees and popularity

It is possible to play the simulation over the web (not as much fun). If you would like to be in on some of the test runs, just contact Stephen Hinton through the contact page on this blog.

See other blogs on the test runs
First test runs

Further articles on UBI


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