SEEDS Basic Income

I have sketched a proposal with the purpose to provide an unconditional basic income for all residents and citizens of SEEDS that bring value to the developments of the SEEDS ecosystem. It is designed with interdisciplinary purpose, I am curious about your thoughts on it and I am excited to co-create this further.

The full proposal is evolving in the document from the link below.

For comments to specific parts of the document, please comment on this in the document. For general thoughts and comments it would suit perfect to share this in this topic in Discourse :slight_smile:

This proposal is interconnected with and created from this Exploration Group about reversing inequality for an equitable future.

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It’s great to see a SEEDS basic income proposal floated here, but I suspect it would take some time to work out the details of this proposal based purely from within SEEDS. In the meantime, the need for fiat in very low-income countries, such as in Africa, is acute, and an immediate basic income could be provided by combining existing ubi schemes with SEEDS. For example, impactMarket is a blockchain-based ubi in which donors can send a ubi in a stablecoin version of the US dollar to poor communities.,The beauty of impactMarket is that the poor community itself decides the parameters of the ubi they want and donors can then choose to donate to that ubi scheme if they wish. So I can envisage a SEEDS community, or bioregional DHO, in a poor country registering with impactMarket as a communty to receive the ubi and then inviting SEEDS communities/DHOs in rich countries to donate to that ubi community, which then can convert the US dollar stablecoin into local fiat in order to meet basic needs whilst building up the use of Seeds for local regenerative projects. Later on, a wholly SEEDS-based ubi could take over when it is ready, but before then there would be a big incentive for people in poor countries to join SEEDS as they would have a chance to receive a ubi in local fiat (or equivalent in crypto if they prefer) as well as receiving Seeds for any regenerative work they do.

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Thanks for the feedback and insights.

The basic income of the proposal can in fact be functional in a broader level than just with Seeds. Once there is liquidity of other tokens to swap with when someone does a payment where this other token gets accepted, it can be made functional with other currencies too. As long as that serves the future we believe in that seems like a worthy additional functionality to me. The reason why I believe in this design of the basic income to launch within Seeds is because it is designed to make SEEDS thrive in a way that it strongly serves the regenerative renaissance and in a way that it reverses inequality by design and with functional incentives rather than donations (donations can be an extra). I don’t believe anything like the design I am proposing already exists. Having this separate token that is given as a basic income and that expires gives a lot of new options to play with governance design, these options wouldn’t be there with an external basic income. For the details of this I would invite you to read the full proposal.

In the coming days I aim to evolve this document of the proposal to get more specific of the potential of this basic income and to create a video to make the information more accessible.

I would love to hear if you think I am overseeing something, if you think that your approach would even with the things I mentioned above be more interesting and if you believe in a different approach such as the one you suggest here and I am excited to learn from the work of impactMarket :slight_smile:

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I do like the way you’re building the concept of demurrage into your SEEDS ubi token. It would definitely encourage prompt spending of it and also increase the velocity of Seeds transactions within the SEEDS economy. I look forward to futher development of your proposal.

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Amazing document Bart, I don’t know why but I felt it important to read and it actually didn’t take long to do so.

I’m just gonna think out loud what comes in support of the pros and cons you have already listed:
I like the idea to provide a UBI for bear necessities and it could be implemented even with/through the Harvest as Universal Earned Income since it is a more targeted use case.

  • By using it as part of the Harvest mechanism it will be easier to keep Seeds stable.
  • The logistics of it are quite grand when it comes to approving organizations to receive the UBI and the tracking of what was sold.
  • For anyone selling bear necessities it will become a must to be approved, which results in many applicants which will add to the tasks of Citizens having voting power in SEEDS. It will be very difficult to truly judge if it is appropriately and fairly used unless in a hyperlocal setting with no global oversight.
  • It does create opportunity for exploitation and over consumption. Books can be manipulated easily and who is to check them? Who is to track and check transactions for validity?
    An online marketplace (e.g. only products registered in the Light Wallet can be traded) to trade UBI products makes it easier but not safe and excludes many exploited regions from using it.

This is not to say not to try it, especially since SEEDS is so young.
I’m all for trying it out. Maybe simply by playing it fictionally and see what comes up.
A spread sheet with fake organizations who apply, real SEEDS members who can vote and trade with fake Tokens and Seeds fake products.

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Thanks for your response and feedback @MaxVBohn . These are definitely points to take serious. I am going to take this feedback into the proposal and see where to integrate it more.

Here a response to all your points.

  • I am curious how you see this as part of the harvest mechanism. Could the basic income still expire in the harvest mechanism and how do you see this for the rest in combination with the proposal I have created? I am aware of how the harvest mechanism has a means to be something similar to the basic income in the future and how this could play out, yet I see many additional features also for the growth of Seeds in this basic income proposal.
  • The logistics of approving organizations are quite grand, that this could be alright is explained in the next dot. I don’t think tracking what was sold is really necessary. A protocol that can function to create oversight is explained in the last dot.
  • For the approval of organizations in the basic income I envision a radically different voting system than the one Seeds currently has. One that is more efficient, less time consuming, easier to understand and that gives voting rights to more than just SEEDS citizens. This is something I still have to work out further in my proposal. I personally believe it is beautiful that this design of the basic income has the expectation to trigger many applicant because this means it triggers rapid growth of the SEEDS ecosystem. The value this brings to the ecosystem can also result in a type of remuneration for the people that vote on the approval of organizations. To keep focus on serving the regenerative renaissance we can add a regenerative valuation to the voting system meaning that the most regenerative organizations get approved from the application process first.
  • Hyperlocal oversight with a flagging and vouching mechanism that people can use towards the organizations that are approved to receive the basic income can protect manipulation. For the rest there indeed is a level of trust needed that the users of the basic income have a mindset of regenerative abundance (or just a level of acceptance that some Basic Income Tokens might be misused). I don’t think misuse is going to be much harder than in many other protocols. For example in comparison to the gratitude token where you could decide to give each other gratitude just to get all the value out of the gratitude token rather than because you are grateful for each other.

I do see potential to create the trial without all the programming that would be involved in setting up this basic income fully. A spread sheet as a basis could be a useful tool for this.

I think the beauty of the basic income is how it is designed to trigger both people and organizations to start using Seeds. In a fictional environment the effect of this can’t be measured. As long as no regenerative organizations apply no Seeds can be spent and as long as the success of the functionality isn’t verified the sum of the basic income can stay low. In this way it can be tried out with quite low cost. This is why I think this design with the expiry date and the application process is so exciting. Everybody knows there is value waiting for them to be spent and the spending can start only when it is actually working.

What do you think?

Beautiful proposal, Bart!
I have made one edit in the document to suggest the existence of an alternative trading platform in the bioregion.

This is to address the chicken-and-egg situation a little better. In other words, if the community is already used to purchasing bare necessities in ways other than simply going to the supermarket, there is a better chance of a complementary currency being circulated widely. I can discuss in more detail on one of our calls.

What I really, really like about this proposal is the marketing angle.
There is a reasonable amount of resistance to overcome when inviting new people to Seeds currently. A UBI story is a much easier “sell” which means that growth of Seeds could be quite significantly accelerated.

Great thinking!

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I love this. You have really thought this through! Great proposal. Yes some details could be worked through but that’s what the community is for and why you posted it here.

From the perspective of using basic income for myself:
*I wouldn’t care if they expire if my basic needs were met.
*if I bought extra food because things were going to expire, I would share with the community or preserve the food before it goes bad. It would be used or I wouldn’t buy it.
*if I had all my needs shelter(rent), food and resource needs paid then I would have very little need for much more and I would be much more able and willing to use my time helping move forward projects that I believe in.
*I would also be more able to work/collaborate for seeds that I could put toward those projects I believe in.
*I would trust a basic income from seeds but never from a centralized government organization.

I love that they expire because a person can choose a stressed interaction of trying to use them or a chill one of just using for what is needed. I think that the consumerism will phase out of peoples systems because it doesn’t make sense to stressfully buy things when your just going to get more next lunar cycle. Those that are purchasing a ton to keep things from expiring are operating in a place of lack. We should pay attention and help them work into an inner place of abundance.
what is the harm in people buying extra food that can be composted. Food is abundant and will become more so in this regenerative world.

That is my perspective on this. I love this concept!

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Is there a way to pilot the idea of the expiring Seeds with a group? I would love to test something like that with a pilot orientation group of 50 that a group of us are developing, or at least be able to receive expiring Seeds via a proposal (or a person or an org) to see what happens. To me, an expiring Seed is much more aligned with nature than something permanent (like plastic).

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Great that you brought up that question here again to make it more alive. This is actually really valuable and I really like what you are proposal @neilkt . I’d love to see this piloting with your proposal as it is most likely possible to finish that proposal way before this one. In this way we already get that technology finished to also have a headstart on the implementations for this proposal.

I share the believe for money that expires and I would love to see it appear in many more areas and places.

I’m exited to co-create with you and I would love to be a part of your proposal (or if this seems better an entirely new proposal) to pilot Seeds that expire.

An inside on this from some programmers could be valuable here to see what it would require to make a token that expires and link it to Seeds. @julioholon @nikolaus would you know who is interested in giving some insight on this or would you be interested in doing so yourself?

Thank you for opening this threat about UBI. I post this great article from Fabiana Cecin, the founder of ACORN and daily-coin

to add to the common knowledge.

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Some harvest from today’s session at the Outer Space call:

This design of the basic income does a lot to separate SEEDS from the traditional society, but the organizations where you can spent the basic income are still especially part of the traditional society. To make this Basic Income much more valuable, we want a marketplace and we want Seeds to go circular (also meaning that the place where the shop receives its products from also accepts Seeds and that people from organizations receiving Seeds within the cycle of the Basic Income accept Seeds as remuneration for their activities within the organization)

This could all be implemented in the requirements for organizations to apply for the basic income and could be stimulated with some guidance from within the SEEDS ecosystem to develop a good marketplace in which such cycles can evolve with ease.


Another topic was the way the SEEDS Basic Income is called.

Suggestions I heard:

  • Universal Earned Income
  • Universal Abundance Income

My favorite name among these is Universal Abundance Income. Maybe that could become

Universal Abundance Seeds

and than maybe simplified to

Abundance Seeds

That is a name I could really see for this project. It is not universal anyways because it is only for SEEDS residents and citizens with a high enough reputation score and a few other things. Downside is that it doesn’t explain itself as much as it would when the word income is used.

So maybe it would be better to use

Abundance Income

What do you think about these name suggestions?

Any other ideas for the name?

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I like the idea of a demurrage currency as a basic income and I like most of the proposal, however I think there are some issues with it as well, which I have highlighted using comments within the document itself. There needs to be more thought put into how the system can be gamed I think, and also maybe whether this proposal is different enough from the Gratitude token which already exists. However I think it’s worth building on for sure. :+1:

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I was thinking about this today. I think it’s a good idea to experiment. I also love how much passion you’re putting into this. :+1: :pray:

The most challenging question that I see here is - How do you judge if the transaction is a sale or not?

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Hello regenerators family,hope this finds u well.
I am Phillip Ojwang’ from Kenya, First of all may I take this opportunity to thank you to allow me share my mind on this platform. Though I might be slightly bit off the topic but I think it’s worth sharing here for this kind of proposal basic Income can indeed have a direct impact to many

I am so much humbled by the several posts am going through in this Seeds explorers, about earth regenerative activities,a place I have been introduced by my Friend Ericflavour Who I also happens to be a Co-founder of Chacha Community.

I believe my post may be relevant too as it touches on volunteer Sponsorship on early childhood education.

My partner Emelder Atieno (emelder12345 on seeds passport)have been involved in an early childhood education initiative for the past 8 years now. My partner Emelder being a trained teacher who hasn’t been lucky to secure a position as an employed education staff, due to the scarcity of employment opportunities and possibility of being absorbed as a permanent employee of the government in this,decided to engage in self employment which is a volunteer like activity for she hardly receive cash from the parents.

We started back in 2017 , through my help as the main sponsor alluded to the fact that am lucky to be employed the government as a security officer so from my little savings and Sacrifices ,we were able to start by enrolling 10 children who were from very needy families, apart from offering education, we offered them free lunch and breakfast which was a great offer based on their unfortunate background.

(POINT TO PONDER
According to us we believe education is the initiation of every regenerative Idea for its what enlightens on the concept and the general know-how of the aspect. Although our impact might be small due to the limited resources we are hopeful for an expound outreach as we believe we impart Seeds of life which in due time will yield marvelous fruits creating room for more Seeds and thus is the cycle.)

Because the parents could hardly afford us any coin, we decided to engage with some of them who were able to volunteer to assist us in cultivating our 3 acres farm for a small token which could offer them soap and some little essentials for their general upkeep.

We were involved in small scale farming of basic fodder crops out of which we were the major beneficiaries as on quarterly basis we were able to stock some sacks of maize and Beans which apart from being food items we were able to exchange some for cash to afford the pupils exercise books and other learning materials.
We have managed to grow slowly overtime getting more children yearly.

Having dwelt much on the background, having learnt about the community,I came to learn about permaculture which has intensely opened my eyes to see how we are underutilising the parcel of land, and will be so much glad if we could get some guidance and possible support out of good heart to explore into this as an seeing it as breakthrough and to this community as it’s a surety of self reliant, taking the first advantage of having land and the good climate as we come from an area bordering lake Basin thus we do experience and receive a sufficient amount of rains which in future can be boosted by digging some water wells and In turn a permanent solution and total independence.

Ericflavour under the Chacha Community, has given some light on the need of adopting permaculture techniques of which given time and input in terms of more regenerative activities my ‘family’ which comprises of the my pupils and their parents…as they are now becoming self reliant as we expect more harvest and return from this.

Any guidance to support this course or donations in whatever forms which can yield Better ideas as well as gains, shall be a major boost to this family and is not taken for granted.
Thank you, hoping to hear from you great family.

PhyllOj12345
phillooj@gmail.com

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speaking of @julioholon & @nikolaus , isn’t the gratitude token this kind of thing?
If I got it right, each of us ‘gets’ 100 of them per moon cycle, and those not used will vanish at the end of the cycle.

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Ok, finally some time to respond :slight_smile:

Your proposal is a SEEDS Universal Earned Income with a specific purpose with slightly different conditions to earn it and use it compared to the Harvest.
It’s use case is smaller and can provide a focus point for parts of the Harvest to be distributed and used first and solely for bare necessities (in my opinion a good tool to further equality, but not necessarily equitability).

The Citizens could decide what the amount of this “bare necessity” income is and automatically allocate this part of the Harvest to a Seeds account like gratz.seeds or gift.seeds.
Here the rest of the functionality you described can take place.
The funds are always topped up with the amount set by the Citizens through the Harvest.
No need for centralized management, therefore it fits right into the Harvest.

This and how to create sufficient oversight is where the potential weak points lie.
So I’m very interested in how you envision this to play out.

My perspective:
As seen now by many a marketplace would be required for this to work nicely.

  • This helps with transparency and clarity around which products are actually sold otherwise there is the trust required that organizations only except the UBI token for bare necessity products without tracking their sales.
  • Bare necessity products categories and specific items could be proposed by Citizens and voted on and automatically added or removed from the list of items with an ID-code. Organizations only have to use this ID-code on the marketplace to show they provide this item.
    Instead of trusting the organizations we trust the Citizens and the transparency of the blockchain to detect misuse.

The negative side effect:

  • we continuously rely on tech. Even though a lot of it could be done also with offline functionality that updates the blockchain only when sufficient data and internet is available but a device would still be needed. This though is the inherent limitation of SEEDS anyway.

The biggest obstacle is liquidity.
For a long time organizations will have to buy their goods with fiat and therefore need to exchange the Seeds they receive for fiat.

How to provide this liquidity?
Only thing I can come up with is through the Seeds sale to other people which will increase competitiveness if it is not done through Hypha or through the marketplace with a fixed value, where people can purchase Seeds to pay for other products on the marketplace and benefit from no transaction costs.
But that will naturally not be enough since also other products will have to be restocked and payed for with fiat most of the time and therefore potentially be stunting the growth.

Regarding the name:
Abundance IMO is very convoluted concept and if looked at the limitations of this UBI concept it doesn’t really fit with many of the concept around abundance.
It is not unconditional nor really universal and is more a food stamp than an income.

As said it is essentially a focused version of the Harvest (UEI) with conditions to provide the means to cover ones bare necessities.
It is life support
It creates basic equality

Something like Basic Needs Token/Income, Life Necessity Token, Life/Bare/Basic Equality Token would speak more of what it is.

A question for you @Bart:
What makes it more valuable to have this “UBI” compared or added to the Harvest except from the short term benefits of providing insensitive to trade food for Seeds?

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Last Fabiana wise post about G$:

I just invited her to participate here.

My own proposal:

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I like the idea of a basic supply, rather than a basic income. But the problem lies not with a new system of tokens but with actually establishing a circular economy and finding shops that would take seeds.
And even if we have found shops who take seeds we harm the cause if we do not establish a market place where they can use it to buy other items.

It really all comes down to target ecovillages and communities who produce a variety of things localy.
A token system can be taken advantage of in many ways. eg two parties exchanging goods but keeping the seeds.
The possibility of technolgies, the anonymity and the capitalisitc system will guarantee corruption.
An online community is not the same as a physical community. and we cannot solve problems here that need to be solved directly with the people and the communities.

We have to reflect on the concept of “spreading thin”. is the vision a currency that can be used to buy everything in my community? What is the vision here exactly? What values can be brought into the communty of SEEDS? because giving away empty money without anything that backing it is exactly what has been done with fiat before.
Reading Reikies proposal to halt coop voting and the fact that it will not get through should be our main concern .

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These are all really great thoughts! All things that would have to be further developed in order to enable this proposal to succeed.

I like the question you ended your message with, it made me dive deeper into what the Harvest is actually all about.

In order to answer this question correctly, I must know all details involved in the Harvest protocol. I am not sure if I do, so I would appreciate it to be corrected in case I describe the Harvest protocol wrong or incomplete.
Here is a response:

  1. I don’t think the benefits for providing incentive to trade food for Seeds would be really short term. This is because:
    a. SEEDS is going to want growth for a long time to come and once post growth is accomplished I expect that the whole design of the ecosystem of SEEDS looks a whole lot different than it did at Go-Live.
    b. Additionally benefiting the purchasing of organic bare necessities additionally triggers regenerative behavior, which is another thing that we want to achieve for a long time.

  2. With the right conditions for organizations/products to be able to receive Seeds from Basic Income Tokens we can stimulate Seeds Marketplaces to evolve both in the short term and the long term.

  3. The Harvest is designed in a way that we as an ecosystem have to succeed economically in order to get rewarded. The SEEDS ecosystem must grow in order for us to get the rewards in the form of harvest. It is a beautiful system to equally benefit from the success of the system as a whole, but it creates a condition that people don’t have in their own hands. This has 2 consequences:
    a. Harvest gets distributed after SEEDS accomplishes new growth, while the SEEDS Basic Income is rather a tool that triggers growth of SEEDS primarily because it is interesting to use already when it is properly operational. This makes the Harvest a rewarding system that is less of a trigger for people to join SEEDS. The Harvest is something you probably get to understand the potential of only once you have learned a lot more about SEEDS than you did when you discovered it and in order for you to feel triggered by the Harvest to contribute to the ecosystem you have to believe in the success of SEEDS. It seems more conditional because it is only given out if the SEEDS ecosystem grows first. With SEEDS Basic Income people have the power to receive Seeds fully in their own hands. I expect that, with the SEEDS Basic Income properly operational, the incentive to join SEEDS grows to such an extend that even the sum of the harvest gets positively influenced by this. It is much easier to explain to people joining SEEDS and it has a direct relation to regeneration.
    b. It is proven that the growth of extrinsic motivation decreases people’s intrinsic motivation. In comparison to the Harvest, the SEEDS Basic Income aligns more with a rewarding system that doesn’t initiate extrinsic motivation and that therefore allows people to get rewarded without losing their natural flow to contribute.

  4. People that use the Basic Income are also more likely to put some Seeds in their wallet, because they want to be able to pay if they spend more than how much basic income they have.

These are some potential additional benefits I see for the SEEDS Basic Income comparing to the Harvest mechanism. I think the Harvest is also a beautiful thing and I see this proposal and the Harvest as two things that can be nicely functional at the same time.

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