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Papers from North America Basic Income Guarantee Congress online

The 2017 North America Basic Income Guarantee (NABIG) Congress was held June 16-18 in New York. Some papers are now available online.

Event Recap

The annual NABIG Congress is jointly organized by BIEN’s North American affiliates, the U.S. Basic Income Guarantee Network (USBIG) and Basic Income Canada Network (BICN).

In 2017, the 16th NABIG Congress was held at Hunter College’s Silberman School of Social Work in New York, New York, from June 16 through 18.

The event was the largest NABIG Congress in its history, drawing over 100 attendees and featuring over 50 speakers. Keynote speakers including Frances Fox Piven (Distinguished Professor of Political Science and Sociology, CUNY Graduate Center), Andy Stern (former President of SEIU), Juliana Bidadanure (Assistant Professor of Philosophy at Stanford University), Joe Huston (Give Directly), and Chris Hughes (Facebook co-founder). Plenary sessions were also held on Welfare Rights and the basic income movement in Canada, including the guaranteed minimum income pilot soon to be launched in Ontario.

Parallel sessions covered a diverse range of context. As USBIG Chair Michael Howard describes in his summary of the congress (see the July 2017 USBIG NewsFlash), “Quite a few sessions focused on movement building, from local to global levels, including two sessions on grassroots organizing, and sessions on cultural and conversational contexts, communication, and messaging. Other topics discussed included child benefits, women, inequality and economic rents, basic income experiments from New Jersey to Africa, costs and financial aspects of basic income schemes (including blockchains), growth and degrowth, and philosophical and religious arguments for basic income.”

The 2017 NABIG Congress also featured two musical performances. Singer-songwriter Brandy Moore revisited her song “Just Because I’m Alive,” which she originally performed at the 2016 NABIG Congress in Winnipeg. Additionally, John Mize closed the conference by performing his new song “B.I.G.” with his son.

A full schedule of the event can be viewed here.

For additional perspectives on the congress from participants, see “(IDEA/Child Find)+ Basic Income = Equity” by Chioma Oruh (June 20, 2017) and “Recap: North American Basic Income Guarantee (NABIG)” by Ryan M Harrison (June 20, 2017).


Content Available Online

Several papers and presentations from the conference are now available in the USBIG discussion paper archives, including (as of July 2017) the following:

– Barbara Boraks: “Consensus or Discord- It’s  Our  Choice: A Values Based Framework For a Basic Income Model

– Karen Glass: “Ontario Basic Income Pilot”

– Rachel Presser: “Why UBI Should Make the Earned Income Tax Credit Obsolete

– Steven Pressman: “A LITTLE BIG: The Case for Child Allowances”

– Steven Pressman: “Ecology vs. the Economy: Lessons from Piketty’s Capital in the 21st Century”

– Sheila Regehr: “Dignity or Degradation: What should be the value base for building a benefit system?

– Cameron Weber: “The Actually-Existing Welfare State in the USA and One Possible Transformation to a Basic Income

– Karl Widerquist: “The Cost of Basic Income: Back of the Envelope Calculations

Additional papers may be uploaded later.


Photo: Mingling after Plenary (credit: Basic Income Guarantee Minnesota)

Reviewed by Russell Ingram

About Kate McFarland

Kate McFarland has written 512 articles.

Former lead writer and editor of Basic Income News.

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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