7-9pm Mon 20 Jul 2020. Doors open 6pm til late.

What's Golden at The Tivoli, 52 Costin St, Fortitude Valley, Brisbane

Tickets from $15


The Topic


UBI: an idea whose time has come to many; anathema to many others. Government responses to the pandemic have heightened interest in the subject.


The concept of universal basic income (UBI) or variations appeal to people at various points on the political spectrum, but could an income support scheme possibly be universal, adequate to live on and affordable? Or is it a utopian distraction from the hard policy graft of allocating scarce tax dollars to those most in need? Alternatively, are there elements of UBI which could usefully guide post-pandemic welfare reform? 


The Purpose


A lot has been written, but there have been few actual public discussions in Australia and all seem to have been something of a rehash of the same main arguments for and against. This discussion will take UBI out of the largely conceptual realm it inhabits and into a practical Australian context. 


We also aim to raise the bar for public discussion more generally, staging a genuine dialogue between speakers with very different views, rather than an adversarial debate. The intention is to establish enough common ground to explore issues collaboratively and point to areas for further reflection and discussion, to policy options and trade-offs, even to possible resolutions and solutions.


Disagreement is inevitable, and might be lively, but it should be enlightening, not bewildering!




Speakers have been chosen for balance, literacy and numeracy on UBI, public communication skills and most importantly of all, their willingness to contribute their time to try something different and better in public discussion. They are (subject to change):


Gigi Foster, Professor of Economics at University of NSW

John Humphreys, Economics Lecturer at University of the Sunshine Coast and University of Queensland

Miranda Stewart, Professor of Law at University of Melbourne and Fellow at the Tax and Transfer Policy Institute at the Australian National University

Simon Cowan, Research Director, Centre for Independent Studies

There will be a Brisbane-based facilitator, to be announced.


The Organisation


The Brisbane Dialogues (TBD) is Australia’s first dedicated civil discourse organisation, a wholly independent, non-aligned, intergenerational, not-for-profit project to stimulate and civilise public discussion about big ideas and issues. Our mission is to generate support for other organisations to turn one-way talks and one-sided discussions into genuine, respectful dialogues or debates.


TBD operates by “The Brisbane Rule” for public discussion:


All participants agree to listen carefully, speak civilly, and concentrate on the content of discussions, not on personalities - before, during and afterwards, online as well as offline.


Event Details


Doors: 6:00pm 

Time: 7:00pm - 9:00pm

Date: Monday 20 Jul 2020

Address: The Tivoli, 52 Costin St, Fortitude Valley, QLD 4006

Please to arrive 6:45pm at the latest for a prompt 7:00pm start for the dialogue.

See ticketing site for further details on available tickets, the venue and covid-19 arrangements.