Guy Standing: ‘I’ve come to believe that a basic income is a right of every individual in every society’

Buenos Aires Times

British economist and professor at the University of London, Guy Standing is a researcher specialising in labour economics and socio-economic security.

An advocate of unconditional basic income and co-founder of ​​the Basic Income Earth Network (BIEN), the 74-year-old explains his vision and the results of the experiments where it was applied. 

In his research, Standing created the concept of a new emerging social class – “the precariat” – and in a feature interview, he details the supplicant characteristics of those who compose it.

In your books, you talk about the crisis of the welfare state after World War II, and with it, the income distribution system that emerged from the irremediable collapse of the welfare state. To deal with this, you propose basic income as a way to combat the ‘eight giants.’ Could you share with our audience the concept of basic income that you develop in your book? And what would these eight giants be in broad strokes?

I developed my interest in basic income when I was doing my PhD at Cambridge [University] in the 1970s. It was clear at that time that the Keynesian welfare-state era was coming to an end. And we had a revolution in economics, which was led by what we now know now as neoliberalism.

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