The Polish political philosophy journal Praktyka Teoretyczna (“Theoretical Practice”) has published a special issue on the relative merits of a basic income and job guarantee.

The contents of the issue are freely available online, although only in Polish.

Contributors contain a mix of supporters and critics of each of the two policies.

Mariusz Baranowski and Bartosz Mika compare basic income and job guarantee programs with respect to a variety of metrics, including funding and cost, impact on existing social security systems, impact on income inequality, and emancipatory effects, ultimately favoring a job guarantee. Pavlina Tcherneva investigates the relative macroeconomic impacts expected from the two types of policies, arguing that a job guarantee possesses an economic stabilizing effect not possessed by basic income. Further, Tcherneva argues that a job guarantee has a greater potential to contribute to sustainable development and ecological goals.

Angelina Kussy and Félix Talego Vázquez, on the other hand, argue for a basic income as a component in a new understanding of work. The authors use ethnographic research of the communitarian Spanish village of Marinaleda to critique contemporary notions of “work”. Zofia Łapniewska also questions the assumptions that form the foundations of current economic institutions–developing a proposal for an alternative economy based on the ethics of care. She uses this as a basis for further consideration of policies including basic income and employment guarantees.

In addition to original articles, the issue also includes a review of BIEN cofounder Guy Standing’s 2017 book Basic Income: And How Can We Make It Happen, as well as a review of the work of economist Mariana Mazzucato.

The edition was edited by Maciej Szlinder, who is Praktyka Teoretyczna’s political philosophy editor as well as an active participant in Poland’s basic income movement.

Praktyka Teoretyczna is an open-access peer-reviewed journal, with new issues published quarterly. Its content focuses on “continuously question[ing] the relation between theory and practice”, and is especially aimed at fostering the development of young researchers.

Reviewed by Caroline Pearce

Photo: Worker in Poland, CC BY 2.0 Chris

About Kate McFarland

Kate McFarland has written 512 articles.

Former lead writer and editor of Basic Income News. Now with The Ecological Citizen.