Friday 6 November at 19h30 at the restaurant “Casa Caroni” Jagerstraat, 8 Den Haag tel. 070-3460370, Robert Van der Veen gives a presentation on  “ Basic Income: an unconditional floor in the welfare state?”.

Il soggetto della presentazione è solo apparentemente di pura tecnica economica. In realtà il concetto di reddito minimo è già sperimentato e di massima attualità. Questa idea va a incidere profondamente su come uno Stato intende ripartire la ricchezza al suo interno. Da questa scelta dipende tra l’altro, la stessa sopravvivenza della classe media e la definizione di soglia di povertà. Non dimentichiamo che la compressione della classe media e l’innalzamento della soglia di povertà sono state le consequenze prime dell’attuale crisi economica che ci attanaglia, come lo furono della ormai famosa crisi del ’29.
La presentazione sarà in lingua inglese.


Basic Income Earth Network

In recent discussions on the reform of the Dutch state pension (AOW) it is sometimes forgotten that this pension was originally meant to provide a tax-financed income for every Dutch citizen over 65 at social minimum level, regardless of work history, income or degree of neediness. Basic Income – alternatively called Citizen Income or Universal Grant – is the radical proposal to extend this right to an unconditional income dispensation to all adult citizens, on grounds of administrative convenience, consistency with a dynamic labour market, social justice and individual freedom.

In this presentation, it will be given an overview of the diverse historical provenance of basic income, and outline the main points of debate with respect to welfare state reforms, especially in the Netherlands. However, it should be noted that the idea has been taken up in many other parts of the world, as may be seen from the website of the Basic Income Earth Network (BIEN) see . It will be focused on the most controversial aspects of basic income, which I take to be its economic sustainability, its complex relationship to the value of paid and unpaid work, and most notably the claim that it secures a fair way of enlarging the freedom of the least advantaged participants in the market economy.

Robert Van Der Veen (1943) is Associate Professor of political theory at the University of Amsterdam and Amsterdam School for Social Research. His current research interests are: global justice, empirical applications of social dilemma problems in various areas and the normative economics of unconditional basic income. Recent publications include: Environmental Dilemmas and Policy Design (2002, with Huib Pellikaan) and Basic Income Versus Working Subsidies (Economics and Philosophy, 2004), Post-productivism and welfare states: a comparative analysis’, British Journal of Political Science, (2006, with Loek Groot), Sustainable Quality of Life: conceptual analysis for a policy-relevant empirical specification (Report for the Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency, 2007, with Ingrid Robeyns).