Basic Income Ireland Forum 2020 will hear from leading experts on how Basic Income can be piloted in Ireland

International leaders in the design and implementation of Universal Basic Income (UBI) pilots will address the Basic Income Ireland Forum 2020 on 21 November, to discuss how a successful basic income scheme can be piloted in Ireland. The Forum follows the Government’s commitment having the Low Pay Commission examine UBI, and to implementing a pilot scheme over the next five years.

Speakers at the conference will examine recent and proposed UBI pilots in other countries such as Canada, Finland and Scotland, and discuss what lessons the Irish Government can learn for its own upcoming pilot scheme.

UBI is an automatic payment from the state to every resident, without conditions attached. It is always tax free and is designed to replace in-work tax credits and core social welfare payments. Top-up payments remain in place for those with additional needs, or for particular issues, such as housing.

With the global pandemic having led to mass unemployment, there have been renewed calls for alternative economic approaches that ensure the basic needs of citizens and allow national economies to thrive.

Speakers at the event include Dr Evelyn Forget, Professor in the Department of Community Health Sciences at the University of Manitoba and author of Basic Income for Canadians: From the Covid-19 Emergency to Financial Security for All, Wendy Hearty, Public Health Intelligence Advisor at Public Health Scotland, and Dr Jurgen De Wispelaere, Assistant Professor in the Stockholm School of Economics in Riga and founding editor of the journal Basic Income Studies.

Anne Ryan, Joint Co-ordinator at Basic Income Ireland, said: “This forum provides an opportunity to hear from international experts, discuss how best to design the forthcoming pilot, and implement a successful, permanent Basic Income for everyone in Ireland. Basic Income provides a floor of financial security for everyone and is one key element of the essential securities and services that the state should provide for all members of society.”

Bobby Lambert, Joint Co-ordinator at Basic Income Ireland, said: “Our experience with Covid-19 shows the importance of social solidarity.  It is very timely for Ireland to be piloting a Universal Basic Income, a practical expression of such solidarity, and we look forward to learning from leading experts on how best to do this.”

This year’s Forum is an online event, taking place from 2.00-4.30pm on Saturday 21 November. To register for the event or for more information see:

Email for additional commentary and spokesperson contact information.

Addendum (30 Nov): footage from the conference can be viewed below

Categories: Press Release