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Growing Support for Basic Income Across Europe

A New EU-Wide Poll Shows: 68% of EU Citizens Would Vote for Universal Basic Income

The idea of basic income enjoys widespread support in Europe. The number of Europeans

supporting basic income increased from 64% in March 2016 to 68% in March 2017, according to

representative survey by Dalia Research. The results are based on more than 11.000 interviews

conducted across 28 EU countries in March 2017.

A third of respondents would want to implement basic income sooner rather than later. 31%

want a basic income in their country ‘as soon as possible’. 32% would wait until ‘after successful

experiments in their country’, and another 16% would wait until ‘after successful experiments in

other countries’ before adopting basic income. Only 8% would never want basic income.

Compared to the previous year, while awareness and support of basic income have increased,

so too have people’s hopes and concerns. In March 2016, 58% of Europeans knew about basic

income, and 63% in March 2017. On the one hand, 52% of Europeans think basic income might

encourage people to stop working (up from 43% last year). Respondents also express greater fear that foreigners could come to their country and take advantage of the benefit (39%, up 5 percentage points). However, over the past year, the potential benefits of basic income received bigger gains among respondents’ support. Up 12 percentage points from last year, 52% think basic income could reduce anxiety about financing basic needs. 42% think it could create more equality of opportunity (+11), 32% think it encourages financial independence (+9), and 29% think it would increase appreciation for household work and volunteering (+8).

While respondents have concerns and hopes over the potential effects of basic income, 37%

say it wouldn’t affect their work choices. 17% say they would spend more time with family if

there was a basic income. 8% say they would work less, 7% would volunteer more, and another

7% say they would gain new skills.

Notably, respondents would want to implement basic income sooner rather than later. 31% want

a basic income in their country ‘as soon as possible’. 32% would wait until ‘after successful

experiments in their country’, and another 16% would wait until ‘after successful experiments in

other countries’ before adopting basic income. Only 8% would never want basic income.

Country Differences

Among the 6 largest European countries, support for basic income is highest in Italy (75%, up 6

percentage points from last year). Last year, Spain was the biggest supporter at 71%, but has

now decreased to 69%. Support for basic income has increased the most in the UK, from 62%

to 69%. France is least enthusiastic, with only 60% support, up from 58%.

A survey by Dalia Research Berlin in cooperation with Neopolis Network

For further information, please contact:

Börries Hornemann

boerries@neopolis.network

+49 174 162 84 38

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