The universal basic income—the idea that people should be paid simply for being alive—is gaining attention in many different sectors. It is being talked about by right-wing libertarians and far-left socialists, by high-tech venture capitalists and inside-the-Beltway think tanks. But is it really feasible in the United States? If so, how, and when?
Join us for a conversation on the prospects for universal basic income with speakers who have been engaged in the topic in several different ways.
Albert Wenger is a partner at Union Square Ventures (USV), a New York-based early stage VC firm focused on investing in disruptive networks. USV portfolio companies include: Twitter,Tumblr, Foursquare, Etsy, Kickstarter and Shapeways. Before joining USV, Albert was the president of del.icio.us through the company’s sale to Yahoo. He recently gave a TEDx New York talk on Universal Basic Income.
Peter Barnes is a co-founder of Working Assets/CREDO, a social entrepreneur, and the author of several books. His With Liberty and Dividends for All explains how a form of universal basic income, modeled on the Alaska Permanent Fund, could provide living wage while helping to prevent catastrophic climate change
Natalie Foster is a fellow at Institute for the Future and co-founder of Peers.org. Before that she was CEO of Rebuild the Dream and led the digital work of Organizing for America, the Sierra Club, and MoveOn.org.
Michael Lewis is a professor at the Silberman School of Social Work at Hunter College in New York City, where he has studied the possible impacts of universal basic income schemes on the economy and the environment. He is a member of the coordinating committee of the U.S. Basic Income Guarantee Network.