Accepted Paper:

Contested authorities, moving experts and the quest for social justice.   


Sabine Klocke-Daffa (University of Tuebingen)

Paper short abstract:

This paper addresses the global discussion on basic income grants as a requirement to (re-)allocate resources and achieve justice. Based on the Namibian income grant project it explores the impact of moving experts and information flows on local negotiations over moral and political authority.

Paper long abstract:

This paper addresses the global discussion on basic income grants which are conceived of as an indispensable requirement for the achievement of social justice. Given the fact that growing wealth is accumulated in fewer and fewer hands on a global scale, the quest for (re-)allocating resources in favor of the poor and underprivileged has become a major issue and contentious point to many platforms ranging from international organizations to institutions of civil society. Scientists from different disciplines move around the world to present their research findings on the feasibility of basic income projects and information has been spread via global communication channels - but when it comes to the local implementation of policies, it all boils down to the question of power and authority.

Based on the results of the recently finalized Namibian unconditional income grant project the paper focuses on the socio-cultural dynamics in the use and allocation of resources. In a highly competitive arena of moral and political authority, the heated public debates revealed that "social justice" is a contested concept and "authority" might be claimed by many stakeholders in the process.

Panel RM-SPK01
By whose authority: investigating alternative modes of power and the legitimization of expertise