GenerationLibre is an independent think-tank aiming to promote freedom. Every kind of freedom.

Empowering local authorities.

Personal data ownership.

Universal Basic Income.

State reforms

The case for "bottom-up subsidiarity"

11 / 03 / 2020

GenerationLibre wants to allow French local authorities, especially municipalities, to seize their own competences.

The different decentralization waves in France didn’t result in greater autonomy for local authorities. Yet our report shows, as many studies have explored, that a greater autonomy can have benefits in terms of economic efficiency, can help to reconcile citizen with politics, and can even reduce territorial inequalities.

The French Constitution doesn’t need to be changed as it already affirms the decentralized organization of the French Republic. We suggest changing the logic of competence sharing, so far decided by the central state, by modifying article L.1111-8-1 of the “Code general des collectivités territoriales”. The central state would hence be bound to grant any competence to municipalities demanding it. Priority should be given to local authorities.

In order to decentralize effectively, we need to break up with the logic of top-down reforms and replace it with the principle of “bottom-up subsidiarity”.

The change is not revolutionary, but it would change the decentralization process from a top-down approach to a bottom-up one.

This reform would renew with a French tradition of respecting the diversity of its territories. It could also bring the decision-making process closer to citizens, hence provide an answer to the democratic challenges of today.


The case for "bottom-up subsidiarity"

Digital revolution

Taking back control of my data

18 / 09 / 2019




Repeated scandals reveal to what extent our personal data are exploited for commercial and political use. Where are they going? Who’s using them? What’s their face value?

Personal data is the new raw material of the economy. The personal data market is forecast to reach the size of one trillion euros, i.e. 8% of the EU’s GDP, by 2020. Online users are permanently producing personal data and yet have almost no control over their use.

The legal framework needs to be updated, data ownership rights need to be introduced. Europe is the right scale to act.
Our first report “Owning my personal data” (January 2018) has already helped to push forward the idea in the French public opinion.

Privacy paradox

Polls show that data protection and personal privacy are major issues for online users. Yet this is clearly at odds with their online behaviour. Users fall victim to this ‘intimacy paradox’. The less they feel their data are protected, the less they will value them, leading to a downfall of their online confidentiality preferences

Personal ownership rights are needed to introduce a price system allowing people to take back control of their data.

Oligopolistic market

The digital economy is highly concentrated because various effects strengthen the influence of big players. The main online platforms benefit from strong network effects.

GDPR, the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation, that came into effect in May 2018 fails to promote competition and could eventually undermine innovation.

To protect online users’ privacy while fostering competition in a market characterised by monopolistic tendencies, a price system has to be introduced as a subtle balance between market and regulation.

Personal ownership rights are needed for personal data to be exchanged. We put forward two models of data ownership: a “contractual” vision and a “proprietary” vision.


Taking back control of my data

Social policies

Implementing a French UBI

01 / 12 / 2014

Today, the French state doesn’t fulfill its legitimate task to ensure that members of the same society have the means to survive.


France is losing the fight against poverty despite some 400 billion euros of social spending every year. It is time to replace our inefficient and unfair social system with a new mechanism.

Meeting one’s basic needs

We want to give every individual a fundamental security so that it can fully enjoy its freedom and make its own choices. We want to implement a universal basic income called LIBER which takes the form of a tax credit, calculated so that everyone can meet their basic needs.

Who can seriously be satisfied with the French social system, this maze of taxes and benefits built randomly over the past decades by what has become an obese, paternalistic and bureaucratic state ? We want an entirely different system.

Our LIBER proposal is financed by an income tax paid on the first euro earned: the LIBERTAXE. This new system makes it possible to tackle poverty effectively because the amount is calculated on the sole criterion of income, and replaces the maze of all the conditional allowances.

Negative tax

The proposal outlined by GenerationLibre avoids paternalism by making citizens responsible for their own choices. It also encourages work since the amounts received in the form of a negative tax decrease in a perfectly linear way as income grows.


Implementing a French UBI


Our latest reports

Questionning the health pass’ proportionality

11 / 02 / 2022

GenerationLibre reviews the proportionality of the Covid Pass. Presenting philosophical, legal and health arguments, we call for its immediate lifting.

Read more

Housing for all

09 / 11 / 2021

GenerationLibre suggests doing a radical overhaul of the French housing policy: simplified lease, new protections for landlords and tenants, and a new tax system on property only to free up use.

Read more

Unlocking universities’ full potential

21 / 09 / 2021

GenerationLibre advocates more autonomy for French universities in terms of governance, funding, hiring and teaching.

Read more

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