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A Policy Comet in Moominland? Basic Income in the Finnish Welfare State

  • Antti Halmetoja (a1), Jurgen De Wispelaere (a2) and Johanna Perkiö (a3)
Abstract

Finland is widely considered a frontrunner in the European basic income debate, primarily because of the decision by Juha Sipilä’s centre-right coalition government to design and conduct the first national basic income experiment (2017–2018). The Finnish basic income experiment builds on several decades of public and policy debate around the merits and problems of basic income, with the framing of basic income over time changing to fit the shift of the Nordic welfare state to embrace the activation paradigm. Underlying this discursive layer, however, we find several discrete, relatively small and unintended institutional developments that have arguably aligned the design of Finnish unemployment security closer to a partial basic income scheme. While the latter may suggest Finland has important stepping stones in place, important stumbling blocks remain and the jury is very much out on whether Finland would be the first European country to fully institute a basic income.

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Social Policy and Society
  • ISSN: 1474-7464
  • EISSN: 1475-3073
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