Meeting the moment, together
Meeting the Moment, Together
The Basic Income Guarantee Conference (BIG!) is the only annual conference in the U.S. focused on all things basic income. In July, 2024 we will be celebrating our 22nd event, which will include collaborative sessions, panel discussions, interactive activities and more, as we dig deep into the most critical issues we face as a society, and a movement. Register now!
San Francisco, Here We Come!
We are excited to host this year's conference in San Francisco, a city at the heart of a region (and a state) where a range of highly successful policy, pilot and coalition-building efforts have been building over the past three years. Throughout the two days the voices and experiences of those in the Bay Area and from across California will be integrated into the broader discussions about how we can continue to meet the challenges we face as a movement.Register now!
Interactive and Engaging
The BIG Conference is a national convening for the basic income community to engage in fun and inspiring sessions that celebrate the progress and wins from across our movement while connecting and collaborating on the work yet to do. Stay tuned for updates on the exciting programming in store for the 2024 Conference.
Photo by Deia Schlosberg
Our 22nd Conference
This year marks the 22nd 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 years; and 3) provide a space to build strong relationships for coordinated, highly collaborative work.
Join us in San Francisco, CA in July, 2024 as we take stock of our movement and plan next steps for Meeting the Moment, Together.
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.
Narrative Change: Centering Community Voices, Building Strategic Campaigns
This session provided key frameworks for thinking about narrative change, evaluating messaging based on shared values, and incorporating successful examples into our work in guaranteed income. We heard about recent successes in Minnesota, where the legislature passed the country’s largest unconditional child tax credit, built upon concerted narrative change efforts by We Make Minnesota and Faith in Minnesota. Speakers also discussed narrative change values and resources across the guaranteed income community, drawing on work from Income Movement, the Jain Family Institute, and the Guaranteed Income Community of Practice.
The Importance of a Diverse Policy Landscape in Early Stage Movement Building
Different policy efforts can help inform design requirements, be a forcing function for tool and infrastructure design, and provide opportunities for the public and politicians alike to engage with the ideas behind basic income and its role in transforming the economy and society. This plenary highlights the current work being done in the policy space, including the opportunities these different efforts provide for informing potential north star federal policy, as well as begins to identify gaps in knowledge or open questions we need to answer to better lay the groundwork for a national basic income.
The Road to Permanency: The Cook County Promise
The Cook County Promise is unique in its stated purpose to establish a permanent program upon the pilot’s completion, with revenues from cannabis taxes providing one source of ongoing funding. In this session, Cook County Promise leadership discusses how Cook County Government came to embrace direct cash policy and commit to a permanent program. Presenters also describe how they built the pilot and its research component with permanency and good governance in mind, as well as touch on their current progress towards building the permanent program. The panel also features Promise Pilot participants who will describe their experience applying for and participating in the pilot.