Events; News & Events

JOB ALERT: 5 year full-time Basic Income researcher

Sam Altman of the Y Combinator, an organisation that provides seed funding to startups, has just announced an ambitious plan to undertake a research project into the effects of a Basic income on people who receive it. The basic idea, still very much “work in progress”, is to give a basic income to a group of people in the US for five years. Y Combinator is looking for a researcher who will take the reigns of the whole project and lead it from start to finish.

The drive behind this project has been the limited amount of data that is available on what people would actually do if they were given a basic income. Altman goes on to argue “that at some point in the future, as technology continues to eliminate traditional jobs and massive new wealth gets created, we’re going to see some version of this [basic income] at a national scale.” This shortage of data and his personal belief is what is driving this research. Its purpose is to further understanding of the impact that a basic income could have on individuals and their level of economic output.

The job itself will be for the whole five years of the project. They are looking for someone with experience in research, however the ad does mention that they place a high value on someone’s potential, so experience isn’t everything. While the ad mentions the location of San Francisco, California, a question in the application form makes it clear that moving to the Bay Area is not a requirement for the job.

This is a unique opportunity for an individual to carry out some groundbreaking research into the benefits of adopting a Universal Basic Income.

Applications close on February 15. For more information and to apply click here.

About Joe Timothy

Joe Timothy has written 12 articles.

Joe is currently preparing to study for his PhD in 2016. He is looking into the feasiblity of introducing a Universal Basic Income in the UK. He is a keen blogger about social issues, politics, inequality, education and learning.

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.


  • Sherry Blair

    There are lots of people who receive a basic income i.e.prisoners, seniors on social security and welfare recipients. My own experience told me that how much you consider basic makes a big difference!

  • The concept of basic income is fundamental for the sustainability of our socio-economic realm. However the way it’s taken into effect will be fundamental to produce the optimum results.
    Since technology is slowly converting some job activities into automation relieving humans from their personal obligations to produce the consumer services and products society requires, we have to plan how we’ll design the intensity of human labor reduction while implementing the machine’s application.
    The purpose is to achieve the best results while the least social and economic interruptions occur. It’s very likely part of the transformation will require the workers to learn a new job activity from directly producing goods, to the maintenance of the machine replacing them.
    Very likely the working hours will be reduced to do the machines or computers maintenance and keep everybody active.
    I envision as part of the project the important task of teaching workers the importance of keeping productivity of the system as the key to its success, so the benefits are enduring for society and individuals as a whole.

    • NoDifference

      Good comment by Etniks (I’m assuming same poster as on Disqus?)

      I totally agree with Etniks position on BIG. It would not make any sense NOT to do so. The fact is, that as technology advances, jobs are eliminated. Period. There really isn’t much of a debate there, other than the slightly convincing rebuttal that there will always be SOME jobs: After all, some people have to be in charge of overseeing the ongoing mechanization of our infrastructure. And I would agree that this area will produce the most challenging (and probably most satisfying) jobs. But for anyone to claim that there will be any 1 for 1 replacement of jobs is hilarious, foolish, and insulting all at the same time.

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