Basic Income Earth Network
This past week, Finland released the final results from its two-year “basic income” experiment. The program produced a modest increase in working days among basic income recipients and noticeable improvements in perceived happiness and healthiness.
Is this a surprise? When governments give people cash assistance, of course, their lives will improve. And with financial stress alleviated, these recipients will still find productive uses for their time.
Simply imagine the unearned suffering billions of people could have been spared if governments had implemented basic income prior to the pandemic and global economic depression.Read more
Not only can basic income make people feel better about their finances, but it can also make them feel better about society, according to a new report from Kela, the government agency behind Finland’s recently wrapped two-year-long basic income experiment. “Respondents who received a basic income had more trust in other people and in societal institutions” than people who didn’t receive payments, Kela wrote in the report — a finding that suggests basic income may lead to increased trust in police, politicians, and similar groups.Read more
The danger of so-called “free money” not only underpins critiques of universal basic income (UBI), but also the incredibly strong narratives that underlie the attitudes to work in the UK (and elsewhere) – and our unemployment benefit system. Paid employment is held up as one of the ultimate markers of being a valuable member of society, with those not in paid work (always described in these narratives as a voluntary position, rather than as the result of issues outside their control) seen as a drain on society. Those out of work are positioned in direct contrast to those in paid employment: the shirkers versus the strivers, the “welfare dependent” versus the hardworking families.Read more
Finland has completed a major trial into the effects of a basic income, and the preliminary results are positive. Recipients felt happier, less stressed, trusted politicians more, and even felt more comfortable on the same levels of income as people that did not receive a basic income.
“The findings are broadly positive, but there are still a lot of unanswered questions,” Luke Martinelli, a research associate from the Institute for Policy Research at the University of Bath, tells Inverse. “There are some significant results on self-reported well-being and levels of trust in other people and institutions.”Read more
Finland has just completed a major basic income experiment where 2,000 unemployed people were given €560 (£490) a month for two years, instead of their unemployment benefit.
The basic income was paid with no strings attached. Recipients weren't required to seek or accept jobs but still received the payment if they found a job.Read more
A routine trip to check the mail took an unexpected turn for Mika Ruusunen in November 2016.
"I opened it and I didn't understand it at all, so I gave it to my wife and asked her what the heck is this," Ruusunen said.
It was the Finnish government informing Ruusunen that he would start receiving free money each month as part of a first-of-its-kind experiment.
Ruusunen was among 2,000 unemployed Finns randomly selected from across the country for a trial testing universal basic income. Each month for two years he would receive 560 euros (roughly $670) from the government, tax-free. He was free to spend the money however he liked.Read more
In a speck of a village deep in the Finnish countryside, a man gets money for free. Each month, almost €560 (£500) is dropped into his bank account, with no strings attached. The cash is his to use as he wants. Who is his benefactor? The Helsinki government. The prelude to a thriller, perhaps, or some reality TV. But Juha Järvinen’s story is ultimately more exciting. He is a human lab rat in an experiment that could help to shape the future of the west.
Last Christmas, Järvinen was selected by the state as one of 2,000 unemployed people for a trial of universal basic income. You may have heard of UBI, or the policy of literally giving people money for nothing. It’s an idea that lights up the brains of both radical leftists – John McDonnell and Bernie Sanders – and Silicon Valley plutocrats such as Mark Zuckerberg and Elon Musk. And in the long slump that has followed the banking crash, it is one of the few alternatives put forward that doesn’t taste like a reheat.Read more
JUHA JARVINEN, an unemployed young father in a village near Jurva, western Finland, brims with ideas for earning a living. “I’m an artist and entrepreneur. Sometimes I’m too active, I don’t have time to stop,” he says. He just agreed to paint the roofs of two neighbours’ houses. His old business, making decorative window frames, went bust a few years ago. Having paid off debts, he recently registered another, to produce videos for clients.
Mr Jarvinen says that for six years he had wanted to start a new business but it had proved impossible.Read more
Finland has become the first country in Europe to pay its unemployed citizens a basic monthly income, amounting to €560 (£477/US$587), in a unique social experiment that is hoped to cut government red tape, reduce poverty and boost employment.
Olli Kangas from the Finnish government agency KELA, which is responsible for the country’s social benefits, said on Monday that the two-year trial with 2,000 randomly picked citizens receiving unemployment benefits began on 1 January.Read more
A group of 2,000 unemployed people in Finland will receive a basic income every month from the state, tax-free and with no strings attached. Proponents hope to prove such schemes boost people's motivation to find work.
Starting in January, 2,000 unemployed people in Finland will begin receiving 560 euros ($585) every month from the state with no strings attached.
The new scheme, which will make Finland the first country in the world to test a universal basic income at the national level, will be managed by Finland's Social Insurance Institution, known as Kela.Read more