Analysing the impacts of Universal Basic Income in the changing world of work: Challenges to the psychological contract and a future research agenda
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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- Scientific articles 
Original versionHuman Resource Management Journal. 2021, 1-18. 10.1111/1748-8583.12348
Technological developments within advanced economies are impacting organisations and working lives. With the advent of ‘Industry 4.0’, Universal Basic Income (UBI) is being cast as a potential ‘buffer’—a social safety net—to the restructuring of organisations, jobs, and economies that are already underway. The Covid-19 pandemic is providing an additional impetus as governments instigate similar safety nets as employment falls in the wake of the virus. To date, much of the debate concerning UBI has taken place in disciplines outside the auspices of Human Resource Management with most commentary occurring within the spheres of economics and social policy. This conceptual study is one of the first within the human resource management (HRM) field to address the potential impacts of UBI on orientations to work and the management of employees. To do this, we focus on a central underpinning theory within HRM, the psychological contract and how this might be affected by its introduction. Finally, a research agenda is developed that provides options by which we might explore the implications of UBI for the practice of HRM when and if such schemes are implemented.