Funding for Open Source Projects: Is a Universal Basic Income the Solution?

Accepted Session
Short Form
Scheduled: Tuesday, June 23, 2015 from 4:45 – 5:30pm in B302/303


Contributing to open-source projects without worrying about making a living? What sounds like a dream could become a reality with the institution of an economic concept called basic income. The idea is currently being debated in numerous countries. This talk will introduce the concept and outline the possible benefits of basic income for the open source community.


Basic income is an economic idea according to which everyone is entitled to a fixed minimum income that they receive irrespective of their employment or other status. The goal of a basic income is to both provide a minimum level of subsistence (and thus to alleviate poverty) and to provide incentives for citizens to engage in more unpaid work than they would otherwise be able to. It is our conviction that the introduction of a basic income would unleash human creativity and ingenuity in an unprecedented fashion, with the open source community standing as a major beneficiary. Although it remains untested in the real world, many countries, including Switzerland, New Zealand, and Greece, have debated introducing a basic income.

In this talk we will provide an introduction to the philosophical and economic foundations of the idea of basic income, discuss the implications of basic income for the open source movement, and argue that the open source community should become a wellspring of support for basic income initiatives.


funding, open source projects, finance

Speaking experience

Luc: Lecturer at Duke University (class on political philosophy), Humboldt University (class on comparative capitalisms) and FAU Erlangen, Germany (class on critiques of liberalism, American political thought, and the political thought of the Enlightenment)

Hannes: Speaker at the PyConUY 2013, Talk and Lightning talks at PDX Python (,d.cGU)
This talk hasn't been presented before.