Scotland to trial Universal Basic Income, giving every citizen an allowance

An experimental Universal Basic Income (UBI) welfare scheme will be trialled in the UK in 2018.

Edinburgh, Glasgow, Fife and North Ayrshire will pilot UBI next year, Futurism reports.

UBI would give every citizen a government allowance, regardless of their employment status, to cover basic needs. 

The concept came into popular thinking in the 1700s and, while heavily criticised by some, has now been adopted after successes in regions within Canada, Finland, Germany and Hawaii.

Studies into the feasibility of UBI in Scotland have been funded by the public, to the tune of £250,000 ($473,000).

Poverty levels in Scotland are higher than in the rest of the UK, with child poverty expected to rise from 23 percent to 29 percent within four years.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon wants to buck the worrying trend.

She said while UBI "might turn out not to be the answer", to its unemployment problem, "it's really important that we are prepared to be open-minded about the different ways that we can support individuals to participate fully in the new economy".

The UBI trials will be carried out from March 2018.