The following article originally appeared on the HANKYOREH’s website at

Can spirited debate over rural basic income lead to success?

For South Korean experiment in rural basic income to be successful, focus must be on policy effectiveness

In this picture from 2015, residents of a village in Icheon, in Gyeonggi Province, are seen planting rice seedlings in a greenhouse. The province has gained considerable attention for its plan to launch a trial program for rural basic income in the second half of 2021. (Lee Jong-keun/The Hankyoreh)

As Gyeonggi Province gears up to run an experiment in rural basic income in the second half of the year, a debate about…

Gyeonggi Province hopes to launch the rural basic income program in the second half of the year

A discussion is underway about what role rural basic income could play in activating local circular economies. In the photo, farmers are planting seed potatoes in a field in the countryside. (Yonhap News)

For a long time now, South Korea’s strategy for balanced regional development has been focused on creating incentives for major institutions, corporations, and basic infrastructure — which are largely concentrated in and around the capital of Seoul — to…

**The following article originally appeared on BIEN’s website at

A forum took place on the meaning and issues of the basic rural income social experiment, which Gyeonggi Province plans to conduct in the second half of this year. Entitled, “The Meaning and Issues of the Community-centered Basic Income Social Experiment,” the first Rural Basic Income Policy Forum was held on the 29th of January and introduced cases and discussed India’s basic income experiment, distribution of shared assets in Boryeong, Chungcheongnam-do, and Jeju Island. The Hankyoreh Economic and Social Research Institute with the Gyeonggi-do Agricultural and Fisheries Promotion Agency, the…

*The following article originally appeared in at

Is a basic income a solution to inequality? Or is it a policy with serious side effects and little impact to show for the massive financial resources channeled into it? Is there any way of pre-testing a policy measure with influences as far-reaching as those of a basic income? For those asking such questions, a new policy holds important implications: the rural basic income system, which Gyeonggi Province is introducing in the second half of 2021. On March 4, the province gave advance legislative notice for the enactment of a “rural…

The 2nd Rural Basic Income Policy Forum was held at the Hankyoreh TV studio at the main Hankyoreh office in Seoul on March 3. (Provided by the Hankyoreh Economy and Society Research Institute)

Rural areas have been neglected in the Korean government’s development strategy and gradually fallen behind urban areas amid liberalization of the agricultural market. What remedies might be available for those areas? What impact will the climate crisis have there? And what role could basic income play in this?

The 2nd Rural Basic Income Policy Forum, which was held at the office of the Hankyoreh on March 3, examined how rural areas will be impacted by the rural basic income that Gyeonggi Province plans to distribute in the second half of this year. The forum was organized by the Hankyoreh Economy…

Rice being harvested at the trial rice paddy of the Rural Development Administration in Gwonseon-gu, Suwon-si, Gyeonggi-do on September 15th, 2020. Yonhap News Agency

In the second half of this year, Gyeonggi-do is planning to conduct a Rural Basic Income social policy experiment, in which ‘local currency’ will be distributed to every resident in a selected rural area. According to the Basic Income Earth Network (BIEN), a network of supporters interested in the idea of a basic income worldwide, basic income is a periodic cash payment unconditionally delivered to all on an individual basis, without a means-test or requirement to work. The term ‘policy experiment’ refers to a research methodology that examines the causal relationship between a policy (cause) and its outcome (effect) by…


Gyeonggi-do’s Rural Basic Income Program

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