Universal Basic Income
In times of rapid technological and economic change, novel policy ideas are required to meet new challenges – think about inequality, robotization and digitalization. One idea that recently gained much attention is the universal basic income (UBI). It comes down to what Dutch author Rutger Bregman called ‘free money for everyone’: a guaranteed income for all citizens of a society. But why is UBI necessary?
Is it an effective tool to combat inequality, or a waste of time and money? And how could we implement it in practice – through small-scale local experiments or a national basic income policy? Fundamentally, it all depends on our vision of the future of social security and the welfare state.
Three experts will present their perspective on a universal basic income and discuss the issue with each other.
Josep M. Coll talks about UBI and “wise cities”. Why are UBI experiments needed, and why do cities play a crucial role in these initiatives? Coll, a marketing and innovation specialist, is currently the director of the EU-Asia Global Business Research Center at the EADA Business School in Barcelona. He also works as a researcher and adjunct professor at the Maastricht School of Management.
Francine Mestrum explains why universal basic income is not a progressive solution for today’s problems. What are the risks of UBI and what are its alternatives? Mestrum, who has worked at the universities of Brussels, Antwerp and Ghent, currently operates as an independent researcher in the field of globalization, poverty and inequality. She coordinates the Global Social Justice network, an initiative that seeks to promote global social development and redistribution.
Antti Jauhiainen discusses the 2017/18 basic income experiment in Finland. What can conclusions can we draw from it, and how could these inform our view on the future of the welfare state? Jauhiainen is the co-founder of Parecon Finland, a think-tank for participatory economics and democracy, and regularly writes about poverty, climate change and the ‘new economy’. His most recent book is The Welfare State Strikes Back (2017, together with Joona-Hermanni Mäkinen).
The evening will be moderated by Gijsbert Vonk, Professor of Social Security Law at the University of Groningen.
Organized in cooperation with SIB Groningen.