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Universal Basic Income and the Reshaping of Democracy

Towards a Citizens’ Stipend in a New Political Order

Burkhard Wehner

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How, where and when can a universal basic income be put into political practice? This book discusses these questions by analyzing the political logic of a basic income and its controversial political and scientific implications. The author studies the institutions, rules, and decision-making processes of conventional democracies to reveal an institutional framework in which a universal basic income for all citizens could eventually become politically viable. The work addresses a broad range of topics, such as nationwide experiments with a basic income, voters’ support for the idea, and the effects of a basic income on business cycles and demographic policies. As such, it will appeal to anyone interested in the preconditions and implications of introducing a universal basic income.

Burkhard Wehner is an independent scholar and theorist in economics and political science. He has developed alternative theories and political concepts of democracy, social and monetary policy, and the labor market. He also writes fiction on related subjects.


Einband Taschenbuch
Seitenzahl 61
Erscheinungsdatum 10.01.2019
Sprache Englisch
ISBN 978-3-030-05827-2
Reihe SpringerBriefs in Political Science
Verlag Springer
Maße (L/B/H) 23,5/15,5/0,4 cm
Gewicht 125 g
Originaltitel please ignore
Auflage 1st ed. 2019


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  • 1. Introduction 1

    2. Basic income ¿ a project for generations 1

    2.1 Unconditional basic income ¿ a consensus-building term? 1

    2.2 The transition to the basic income system - an impossible task? 4

    3. A long-term vision 11

    3.1 Maximal market transparency 11

    3.2 Maximal transparency in redistribution 13

    3.3 Basic income and social security 13

    3.4 Basic income, minimum wage and full employment guarantee 15

    3.5 Optimization, not maximization 16
    4. Basic income in other policy areas 20

    4.1 Basic income and business cycle policy 20

    4.2 Basic income and demographic policy 21

    4.3 Basic income for nations in need 22

    5. Common objections to basic income 25

    5.1 Tax burden and work incentives 25

    5.2 Further objections 27

    6. The role of pilot studies 29

    6.1 Experiments to date 29

    6.2 The logic of basic income studies 33

    6.3 The case for nationwide experiments 35
    6.4 Candidates for nationwide experiments 40

    6.5 Principles of sponsoring 42

    6.6 Potential sponsors 43

    6.7 Epistemic objectives 44

    7. Basic income, demographic structure and the size of the state 46

    8. Basic income and the reshaping of democracy 51

    8.1 Intellectual overburdening of policymakers 51

    8.2 Basic income states - involuntary associations? 57

    8.3 Intellectual overburdening of citizens 59

    9. A project for the 22nd century? 62

    9.1 Two basic errors 62

    9.2 Formation of consciousness 64

    9.3 The political detour as a shortcut 64

    9.4 The future of basic income activism 66

    Bibliography 69