14th Annual Congress, February 26-May 1, 2015

14th Congress

The Fourteenth Annual North American Basic Income Guarantee Congress

Was videotaped: sessions can be viewed here

New York, NY Thursday, February 26 – Sunday March 1, 2015

Most Events at the Sheraton New York Hotel and Towers

Full schedule here

The Basic Income Guarantee (BIG) is suddenly a major topic of conversation in America and around the world. Activist movements have sprung up to push for it. Recent articles in the popular press have discussed it as a part of strategies to address recession, poverty, inequality, carbon pollution, and technological unemployment. In an economy forcing increasing numbers of people into precarious employment situations, is BIG a necessary and achievable part of efforts to retrieve democratic social stability? Can we afford it? How will it affect the economy? Will the new activist movements for BIG take off?

More than forty scholars and activists will address these and other questions at the Fourteenth Annual North American Basic Income Guarantee (NABIG) Congress, which will take place in New York City starting Thursday, February 26 – Sunday March 1, 2015. The congress is organized by the U.S. Basic Income Guarantee Network (USBIG) in cooperation with the Basic Income Canada Network (BICN/RCRG). Most events will be held in conjunction with the Annual Meeting of the Eastern Economic Association (EEA) at the New York Sheraton Hotel and Towers, 811 7th Avenue, New York, NY‎. It will also include free events including a public discussion at the Hunter School of Social Work on Thursday, February 26 and an activists meeting at the Brooklyn Commons on Sunday March 1.

Conference participants include:

  1. Alanna Hartzok, the Earth Rights institute, 2014 Democratic Nominee for Congress
  2. Ann Withorn, Professor Emeritus, University of Massachusetts Boston, author of Serving the People: Social Services and Social Change
  3. Ashley Engel, University College Dublin
  4. Bill DiFazio, St. John’s University
  5. Brigid Reynolds, Social Justice Ireland
  6. Diane Dujon, University of Massachusetts Boston
  7. Diane Pagen, Rutgers University School of Social Work
  8. Eduardo Suplicy, former member of the Brazilian Federal Senate
  9. Eri Noguchi, the Association to Benefit Children
  10. Felix Coeln, the German Pirate Party
  11. Frances Fox Piven, the City University of New York
  12. Frederick H. (Harry) Pitts, University of Bath
  13. Ian Shlakman, 2014 Green Party Nominee for Congress
  14. James Green-Armytage, Bard College
  15. James Jennings, Tufts University
  16. Jim Bryan, Ryan/Bacardi Professor of Economics, Manhattanville College
  17. Jim Mulvale, Dean of the Faculty of Social Work at the University of Manitoba
  18. Jonathan Brun, Basic Income Canada Network
  19. Jude Thomas, Freelance writer
  20. Jurgen De Wispelaere, McGill University
  21. Karl Widerquist, SFS-Qatar, Georgetown University
  22. Marshall Brain, author of How Stuff Works and Manna
  23. Mary Bricker Jenkins, Professor of Social Work, Temple University, and US Welfare Rights Union leader
  24. Michael Lewis, Hunter School of Social Work
  25. Michael Howard, University of Maine
  26. Michaelann Berwitz, activist
  27. Mimi Abramovitz, Hunter College
  28. Oliver Heydorn, The Clifford Hugh Douglas Institute for the Study and Promotion of Social Credit
  29. Paul B. Siegel, the World Bank
  30. Peter Barnes, author of Who Owns the Sky?, With Liberty and Dividends For All, and Capitalism 3.0
  31. Preston Smith, activist
  32. Roy Morrison, Greater Boston Capital Partners
  33. Seán Healy, Social Justice Ireland
  34. Sid Frankel, University of Manitoba
  35. Stanley Aranowitz, the City University of New York
  36. Steven Pressman, Monmouth College
  37. Steven Shafarman, author, activist
  38. Suezanne Bruce, activist
  39. Valerie J. Carter, University of Maine
  40. Willie Baptist, the Poverty Initiative


Thursday, February 26, 2015

6:30 pm to 9pm: Public Discussion: “New Possibilities for the Basic Income Movement”

LIC Art Center / LIC Academy of Music 44-02 23rd St., Studio 204 (second floor), Long Island City, NY 11101

Friday, February 27, 2015

8am to 7pm: Sessions at the Sheraton Hotel

Evening: social event to be announced

Saturday, February 28, 2015

8am to 6:30pm: Sessions

Evening: social event to be announced

Sunday, March 1, 2015

8am to 12:30pm: Sessions at the Sheraton Hotel

12:45-m-2:15: Lunch meeting: organizational meeting of the USBIG Network

6:30pm: Activists Meeting: “Are we ready to start an activists movement for BIG in the United States?” We’ll chip in for pizza and drinks, but we’ll share the food and drink unconditionally with everyone who comes—without means test or any requirement to make a reciprocal contribution. We will discuss this question without any more specific agenda. Karl Widerquist will moderate the discussion, but will not lead the discussion or any effort that might come out of it.

at the Commons Brooklyn, near the Hoyt-Shermerhorn subway stop in downtown Brooklyn.


Everyone attending the events at the Sheraton must register with the EEA and pay their registration fee (all events outside the Sheraton are free and open to everyone). If you register as a USBIG participant, you can register for the EEA members’ price of $110 without paying the EEA’s membership fee—saving $65. All registered attendees of the NABIG Congress are welcome to attend any of the EEA’s events.

Register for the NABIG reduced fee by going to this website:  http://eeaorg.myshopify.com/products/usbig-registration-non-academic

Reduced price admission for low-income people and students is available (contact the organizers). Reporters with press passes reporting on the conference can bypass registration.

Economists must pay the full registration fee of $175, which includes membership in the EEA. Economists can register at the main website:  http://eeaorg.myshopify.com/collections/conference-registration-and-event-tickets

The onsite registration fee will be $185.

For more information about the Eastern Economics Association Annual Meeting, visit the EEA website:http://www.quinnipiac.edu/eea/41st-annual-conference/.

Essential information:

Conference dates: Thursday, February 26 – Sunday, March 1, 2015 Locations: New York, Queens, and Brooklyn, NY: The Sheraton Hotel and Towers, LIC Art Center, and the Brooklyn Commons

Organizing committee: Karl Widerquist <Karl@Widerquist.com> (organizer), Ann Withorn <withorn.ann@gmail.com>, Shawn Cassiman <scassiman1@udayton.edu>, and Jurgen De Wispelaere <jurgen.dewispelaere@gmail.com>

Website: USBIG.net.