UBI cannot work on its own, a whole new rethink needs to be applied to the jobs market, a job doesn’t just supply someone with money, food or shelter, a job for many people is more importantly part of their identity, giving their life purpose and meaning. Alleviating financial problems with a basic income program then may just solve the fringe issues surrounding money but doesn’t address the fundamental problem of purpose and meaning in life. For this reason UBI should possibly be looked at as more of a piece to the complex puzzle, a puzzle of a future well balanced job market of a society that is much more automated.
While automation is augmenting or often replacing jobs outright, there will gradually be less of a need to have as many people working, but the need to work, the need for purpose, the need to spend ones time meaningfully, will not diminish. If automation and AI are going to effect the jobs market moving forward maybe more people could collectively do the remaining jobs while benefitting from the rewards of technological innovation, but UBI will not address this issue alone and there are wider issues of purpose that need addressing in a basic income society. UBI could be useful though and especially if used as a suite of complementary policies, for example cutting weekly working hours and promoting job sharing. In this way UBI could alleviate poverty, while allowing people to pursue leisure or health based pursuits more often, addressing societal health issues also, and still providing the meaning, purpose and fulfilment that a job provides most people.