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Futurist Gerd Leonhard on BIG

Gerd Leonhard, the acclaimed futurist speaker and author, believes that a Basic Income Guarantee (BIG) might be a necessary consequence of increased automation.

Last February, Hank Pellissier of the Institute of Ethics & Emerging Technologies interviewed Leonhard on his “opinions and forecasts” regarding BIG.

In the brief interview, Leonhard discusses the conditions that he sees as prerequisites for the adoption of a BIG, concluding that “a basic income guarantee is only possible once we unbundle work money, and once the traditional mantra of profit and growth at all costs has collapsed.” He is optimistic that, eventually, societies will assume this post-capitalist outlook.

After addressing questions on BIG-related topics, including Switzerland’s basic income referendum and technological unemployment, Leonhard broaches the idea of “automation tax,” which “companies would pay for each job replaced by a machine.” In Leonhard’s view, an automation tax may be an effective means of providing governments with money to reinvest in “creating a flourishing society and allowing for human happiness.”

Read the interview here:

Hank Pellissier, “Basic Income Guarantee will allow us to move the Maslow Pyramid – interview with Gerd Leonhard”. Institute of Ethics & Emerging Technologies, February 7th 2016.

For more about Gerd Leonhard, including videos and descriptions of speaking topics, see his website.

Image credit: ictQATAR

Kate McFarland

About Kate McFarland

Kate McFarland has written 500 articles.

I was a statistician, then a philosopher, then a journalist for a certain Basic Income News, and I have never been the sort to wed myself to any specific position or career path. I will be leaving basic income news reporting soon too, but you can follow me on Facebook and Patreon, where I like to post about my favorite topics: the deliberate rejection of full-time jobs and lifelong careers.

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The views expressed in this Op-Ed piece are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the view of Basic Income News or BIEN. BIEN and Basic Income News do not endorse any particular policy, but Basic Income News welcomes discussion from all points of view in its Op-Ed section.

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