Only days ahead of the Swiss referendum on basic income we take on the very same topic. A guaranteed basic income for every citizen: The idea sounds alluring, especially if it would replace the hotchpotch social security systems around Europe. Basic income is currently reliving somewhat of a renaissance in Europe, with the Finnish government implementing its first experimental basic income scheme and crowdfunders testing the concept in Berlin.

Would a basic income increase the number of citizens relying on government support, will it spur or lessen creativity and entrepreneurship? Will it make us more or less productive? Can the welfare state take it? It is all in the basic income model you choose and that is why we are gathering an exciting panel to talk about whether we should consider basic income a feature of paradise or of purgatory.

Date and time: 2 June 2016, 12:00-14:00
Venue: Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom, Avenue de Cortenbergh
71, 1000 Brussels


Head of Crowdfunding, “Mein Grundeinkommen”


Researcher, Liberal Institute, Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom

Businessman und Verfechter des Grundeinkommens

Senior Specialist, Finnish Permanent Representation to the EU


Niklaus Nusplinger
NZZ Correspondent, Brussels

Registration by 1 June 2016: click here.

Registrants will be forwarded to a Google Drive sheet. Should
anyone wish to register with the organizers directly  send an email to Photographs will be taken at the event for
use on the FNF website, social media, in the press, FNF marketing
materials, and other publications. By entering this event, attendees consent
to FNF photographing and using their image and likeness.

Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom
European and Transatlantic Dialogue
Avenue de Cortenbergh 71
B – 1000 Brussels
T: +32 2 282 09 42
F: +32 2 282 09 31

About Karl Widerquist

Karl Widerquist has written 983 articles.

Karl Widerquist is a Professor of political philosophy at Georgetown University-Qatar, specializing in distributive justice—the ethics of who has what. Much of his work involves Universal Basic Income (UBI). He is a co-founder of the U.S. Basic Income Guarantee Network (USBIG). He served as co-chair of the Basic Income Earth Network (BIEN) for 7 years, and a member of the BIEN EC for 14 years. He was the Editor of the USBIG NewsFlash for 15 years and of the BIEN NewsFlash for 4 years. He is a cofounder of BIEN’s news website, Basic Income News. He is a cofounder and editor of the journal "Basic Income Studies," the only academic journal devoted to research on UBI. Widerquist has published several books and many articles on UBI both in academic journals and in the popular media. He has appeared on or been quoted by many major media outlets, such as NPR’s On Point, NPR’s Marketplace, PRI’s the World, CNBC, Al-Jazeera, 538, Vice, Dissent, the New York Times, Forbes, the Financial Times, and the Atlantic Monthly, which called him “a leader of the worldwide basic income movement.” Widerquist holds two doctorates—one in Political Theory form Oxford University (2006) and one in Economics from the City University of New York (1996). He has published seven books, including "the Prehistory of Private Property (Edinburgh University Press 2020, coauthored by Grant S. McCall) , "A Critical Analysis of Basic Income Experiments" (Palgrave Macmillan 2018), "Prehistoric Myths in Modern Political Philosophy" (Edinburgh University Press 2017, coauthored by Grant S. McCall) and "Freedom as the Power to Say No" (Palgrave Macmillan 2013). He has published more than a twenty scholarly articles and book chapters. Most Karl Widerquist’s writing is available on his “Selected Works” website ( More information about him is available on his BIEN profile ( He writes the blog "the Indepentarian" for "Basic Income News."