Learn about Basic Income by simulating it!

Business game

When the economy works for all

Length: 0.5-1 day
Purpose: to simulate how Universal Basic Income might be introduced, the decisions that need to be made along the way and likely effects. The simulation offers insights into the possibilities and challenges with basic income and provides an opportunity for you to explore your own perceptions, questions and gaps in knowledge.

Scope: Simulations are tailored to focus on broad principles and are simplifications of reality. However, being in the situation where you have to make decisions helps you understand perspectives on the issues at hand that you might otherwise not have come across. Things that come up include:

  • Amount of UBI monthly payment per person
  • Suitable recipients from UBI
  • Changes in taxation to cover UBI costs
  • Reductions in administrative expenses
  • Effects on labour market
  • Effects on economy in general
  • The relationship to the circular economy

Who are simulations for?

  • Policy advisers and makers at national and municipal level.
  • Environmentally interested national economists.
  • Economy interested environmentalists.
  • Those working politically
  • Those working in communicating about environment and fiscal policy.
  • Activists.

Why attend?  Learning through simulation opens insights otherwise hard to access.
Main contents: Introduction to Universal Basic Income, attitudes and facts, simulation, discussion and reflections and lessons learned/things to be researched further
How we run the simulation: After a basic overview of the country involved (Lilliput) and some general sharing of participants’ initial views and understanding, the simulation is run over 9 to 12 rounds. Between rounds there is space for reflection and orientation as the consequences of decisions appear.
Includes: Economic, practical and psychological perspectives. Having to make tough decisions  brings underlying preconceptions to the surface.

Should there not, many argue, be a basic guaranteed minimum that everyone gets to ensure they can  buy food, rent a home etc? If we believe in the monetarized society why are these mechanisms in their infancy? Should we not be learning more about these methods and developing them?

Possibly. But just letting people have money is emotional as well as logical – so we need a way to explore UBI in the economic, practical and psychological dimensions. Simulation is a great way to get to understand these policy instruments up close, and to explore your own assumptions.

The simulation decisions produce graphs of various aspects of UBI

The picture above shows some of the types of graphs that are produced during the simulation. In this test run, taxes on VAT are raised, tax on work is lowered, UBI is raised and people leave their jobs.

Some questions the simulation workshop explores:

  • How would UBI work?
  • Where would the money come from
  • What sort of money are we talking about?
  • Will people quit their jos?
  • What will happen to the economy?
  • Will new types of social organisations flourish?

Debriefing, and learning sessions are carried out between rounds to ensure participants get the maximum learning out of the experience.

All participants are provided with a compendium for personal follow up and further reflection, including the scores from each round and accompanying graphs.

Our simulation workshops explained:

  • Based on models developed by Anders Höglund
  • Simplified so you can concentrate on overview
  • For business leaders, government officials, politicians and activists
  • Generates statistics in real time
  • Provides a framework for discussion, debate and reflection
  • Different rounds allow you to test different kinds of communication and economic strategies


  • Computer-based
  • Up to six groups
  • Max 50 participants
  • 2-8 hours
  • Experience the world of UBI for yourself!
  • Can be run over the Internet


Number of participants: 10-50

Price: Ask for offer.

Locations: can be played out in a small group, in a fish-bowl setting with an audience or over online conferencing.