Guy Standing is a Professorial Research Associate and former Professor of Development Studies at SOAS University of London. From August 2006 until January 2013, he was Professor of Economic Security at the University of Bath in the UK. Between April 2006 and February 2009, he was also Professor of Labour Economics at Monash University, Melbourne, Australia. From 1999 until March 2006, he was Director of the Socio-Economic Security Programme of the International Labour Organisation in Geneva, Switzerland. In 1998-99, he was in the “transition team” set up by the ILO’s new Director-General to help restructure the organisation. He was previously Director of the ILO’s Labour Market Policies Branch, and before that Director of the ILO’s Central and Eastern European Team, based in the Hungarian capital, Budapest.
Professor Standing is a founder member and honorary co-president of the Basic Income Earth Network (BIEN), an international non-governmental organisation that promotes basic income, whose members include economists, philosophers and other social scientists from over 50 countries. He has a doctorate in economics from the University of Cambridge and a master’s degree in industrial relations from the University of Illinois. He has written and edited books on labour economics, labour market policy, unemployment, labour market flexibility, structural adjustment policies, and social protection policy. His most recent books are Basic Income: And How We Can Make It Happen (London: Penguin, 2017), The Corruption of Capitalism: Why Rentiers Thrive and Work Does Not Pay (London: Biteback, 2016), Basic Income: A Transformative Policy for India, with Sarath Davala, Renana Jhabvala and Soumya Kapoor Mehta (London and New Delhi: Bloomsbury Academic, 2015), A Precariat Charter: From Denizens to Citizens (London and New York: Bloomsbury Academic, 2014) and The Precariat: The New Dangerous Class (London and New York: Bloomsbury Academic, 2011). Earlier books include: Social Income and Insecurity: A Study in Gujarat, with Jeemol Unni, Renana Jhabvala and Uma Rani (New Delhi: Routledge, 2010); Work after Globalization: Building Occupational Citizenship (Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar, 2009); Promoting Income Security as a Right: Europe and North America (London: Anthem Press, 2005); Beyond the New Paternalism: Basic Security as Equality (London: Verso, 2002); and Global Labour Flexibility: Seeking Distributive Justice (Basingstoke, UK: Macmillan, 1999).
Professor Standing was coordinating editor and main writer of the ILO’s Economic Security for a Better World, a global report issued in 2004. He is on the editorial advisory boards of several academic journals, including Development and Change and the European Journal of Industrial Relations. He has conducted household and enterprise surveys on labour and economic security issues in over 25 countries, and has advised many governments on the design and implementation of labour force surveys.
In 2003-04, Professor Standing was a member of the International Committee on Emerging Human Rights, set up as part of the Barcelona Social Forum. He was a member of Bruno Kreisky’s Commission on European Employment (1987-89) and has worked as a consultant with many international bodies, including the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), the International Confederation of Free Trade Unions (now the International Trade Union Confederation), the European Commission, the UN Research Institute for Social Development (UNRISD), the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, and the UN Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE). In 2006-07 he was a consultant economic adviser to the Economic Security division of the International Committee of the Red Cross, and was the main writer for the UN’s Report on the World Social Situation published in late 2007. In 2014 he was invited by the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs to join its expert network on social development for an 18-month project reviewing progress since the World Summit for Social Development in Copenhagen in 1995.
Professor Standing was economic adviser in the Prime Minister’s Department in Malaysia in the 1980s, and has worked as a social and labour policy adviser with various other governments around the world. He was a consultant to the US National Commission on Employment and Unemployment Statistics in 1979, a member of the Advisory Committee to the Russian Federal Employment Service (1993-96), research director for the Presidential Labour Market Commission of South Africa (1995-96), economic adviser to the South African Minister of Labour (1994-96) and adviser to the South African Committee for the Comprehensive Reform of Social Security (Taylor Committee) (2000-02). He has also been invited at various times to give advice to the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID), and was an adviser to the Secretary of State for Development on the Government's White Paper on globalisation and international development, Eliminating World Poverty: Making Globalisation Work for the Poor (London, HMSO, 2000). In 2007, at the request of the South African Minister of Labour, he carried out a review of labour market policy that served as a basis for recommendations to the Government.
Professor Standing was a keynote speaker at the 2001 and 2003 international conferences of the International Social Security Association and has been an invited keynote speaker at European Union presidency events in Athens, Glasgow, Porto and Strasburg. In October 2006, he was the annual Scholar in Residence at Holyoke College, Massachusetts, USA.
In 2009 Professor Standing was elected Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences in the UK. In 2014 he received an honorary doctorate from the European College of Economics and Management, Bulgaria, and was invited to join the International Advisory Group of Northeastern University's Center for International Affairs and World Cultures. In 2019 he was invited to become a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (UK). He is a member of the Progressive Economy Forum (UK).