Preliminary Analysis: SEED’s First Year

The Stockton Economic Empowerment Demonstration, or SEED, was the nation’s first mayor-led guaranteed income initiative. Launched in February 2019 by former Mayor Michael D. Tubbs, SEED gave 125 Stocktonians $500 per month for 24 months. The cash was unconditional, with no strings attached and no work requirements. This Randomized Control Trial (RCT) pilot is being evaluated by a team of independent researchers, Dr. Stacia West of the University of Tennessee and Dr. Amy Castro Baker of the University of Pennsylvania, and funded by the Evidence for Action Program at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Our primary research questions are the following: How does guaranteed income impact income volatility? How do changes in income volatility impact psychological health and physical well-being? How does guaranteed income generate agency over one’s future? In March 2021, SEED released its preliminary findings from the first year of the experiment. These findings encompass the pre-COVID time period from February 2019 through February 2020.