BUilding Momentum Across the Movement

The BIG Conference

21st Annual Basic Income Guarantee Conference

2 Days in Chicago, IL + Livestream

Welcome to the Basic Income Guarantee Conference, the only annual conference in the U.S. focused on all things basic income. In June 2023, we will be celebrating our 21st Conference, which will include collaborative sessions, panel discussions, interactive activities and more, as we dig deep into: Building Intersectional Coalitions, Shifting Culture and Narratives, and Nurturing a Diverse Policy Landscape.

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We are excited to host this year's conference in Chicago, IL, a city that has led a range of highly successful policy, pilot and coalition-building efforts. Throughout the two days the voices and experiences of those in the Chicago community will be integrated into the broader discussions about our shared national vision for a more equitable and just society, and the path that we are on collectively towards realizing it.

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In-person, Interactive sessions

Dynamic Location

This year's BIG Conference will be hosted at the Moonlight Studios, in Chicago's West Loop. It's an exciting space designed for interactive experiences that inspire collaboration and fun. You can check out the space here.

Event Features

This year's BIG Conference is a hybrid event. See some of the dynamic solutions we incorporated into the 2023 Conference to foster meaningful experiences and conversations.

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Crowdcast for Easy Access

For our main sessions we are using Crowdcast. This allowed for streamlined access for remote viewers and integrated chat and Q&A with the in-person programming.  

Social Hours for Networking

In Chicago, lunch breaks and receptions are planned for people from across the community to connect with each other. These are opportunities for casual conversations, networking and deeper debates about all things basic income.

Interactive Sessions

Conference organizers worked closely with panelists to design sessions that allowed for audience participation and interaction with the ideas being covered.

Our Sponsors

Thank you to the following organizations for sponsoring this year's Basic Income Guarantee Conference. Through the generous donations of these organizations we are able to support travel for dozens of activists, small nonprofits and pilot participants and provide an interactive, dynamic, hybrid experience for all registrants.

Our 21st Conference

This year marks the 21st annual BIG Conference. The event has grown over recent years to become the annual national conference for the basic income movement, bringing together grassroots activists, policy wonks, artists, pilot administrators, social and economic justice organizations, think tanks, researchers, community-based nonprofits and more. The goal of the conference is threefold: 1) to take stock of the current state of the movement 2) to inspire, conspire and collaborate on efforts for the upcoming year; and 3) provide a space to build strong relationships for coordinated, highly collaborative work.

Join us in Chicago, IL in June 2023 as we realize the vision of Building Momentum Across the Movement.

History of the Conference

The BIG Conference (formerly the North American Basic Income Guarantee (NABIG) Congress) has been held every year since 2002 with the exception of 2020, to promote networking and exchange of ideas among scholars, activists, and policy makers. The first eight Conferences were organized by the US Basic Income Guarantee Network (USBIG) in conjunction with the Eastern Economic Association meetings. Beginning with the 2010 Montreal Congress, NABIG was co-sponsored by USBIG and the Basic Income Canada Network (BICN) and alternated annually between Canada and the United States.  In 2021, the number of sponsors of the NABIG Congress expanded to include Income Movement and Fund for Humanity. Because of the pandemic, the conference was entirely virtual.

Conferences have been supported by hosts such as the Silberman School of Social Work at Hunter College, New York City, Centre for Research in Ethics at the University of Montreal, the University of Toronto, the University of Manitoba, and McMaster University, with financial support from foundations such as the Economic Security Project,  and with the cooperation of other organizations including the Hamilton Roundtable for Poverty Reduction, Low Income Families Together, the Roosevelt House, and the Basic Income Earth Network. As the conference has grown in recent years, it had cemented itself as a critical strategic place for building the national movement for basic income in the US.

Highlights from the 2022 BIG Conference

From Pilots to Policy

Guaranteed Basic Income Pilots have been a strategic tool in driving the national conversation about the value of direct cash and its impact.  This Keynote Discussion will include leaders from key organizations who led initial pilot, their focus and strategy in early years, and their evolution as key tools to support cultural narrative change, grassroots coalition building, and policy design at the state and federal level. Join Madeline Neighly from Economic Security Project, Kathrine Cagat from Mayors for a Guaranteed Income, and Halah Ahmad, from Jain Family Institute in this important conversation.

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Film, Stories, and Shifting Culture: Basic Income Filmmaker Forum

Join this exciting conversation with filmmakers who have tackled basic income through a variety of lenses and approaches and hear more about the process of getting their films made, their hopes and goals for their films as agents for change, and the next steps for their films. Filmmakers include: Chris Panizzon, producer of Inherent Good, Conrad Shaw, producer of Bootstraps, and Hazel Gurland-Pooler, director of Storming Caesar’s Palace.

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Supporting Babies, Ending Child Poverty

Targeted guaranteed income programs such as the CTC or pilots focused on very young children have shown promising results both for the children and their parents. Panelists will discuss the pros and cons of a more limited guaranteed income creating a floor for families with children, including the “End Child Poverty” introduced in Congress earlier this year. Join the exciting conversation with Rep. Rashida Tlaib, U.S. Congress, House of Representatives; Holly Fogle, Monarch Foundation / The Bridge Project; Kyra Grener, Family Health Project; Elizabeth Deyoung, UPenn Center for Guaranteed Income Research

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Leading Organizations

Income Movement and USBIG are the national organizations leading the BIG Conference, ensuring the two day event grows and evolves each year to meet the needs of the broader basic income community. Together, they are the fiscal sponsors and managing organizers of the event.