For this weekend's EA Global Student Summit I wrote a short talk about jargon that's popular in the EA community. It covers:
Folks liked it on social media and jargon has been a regular topic here on the EA Forum, so I thought I'd share.
Open commenting is enabled on the Google Slides so you can respond to specific points!
Disclaimer: This is an interim report and the views expressed here do not represent "house views" of our employer Founders Pledge
Global health and development is still arguably the most popular EA cause. For example, payouts from the Global Health and Development EA Fund comprise 45 percent of the total amount of money granted from EA Funds. Almost all of this spending supports so-called “randomista”-type development: direct interventions that have strong experimental evidence of effectiveness. This allocation is justified by the claim that these interventions are the most co... (Read more)
A donor-advised fund (DAF) is an investment account that allows donors to take a tax deduction now and give the money to charity later. When you put money into a DAF, you can deduct it just as you would deduct charitable contributions. Then you can direct the DAF on how to invest the money, and choose to donate it whenever you want.
If you want to invest to give later, DAFs have some clear advantages, plus some limitations. Is it better to use a DAF, or to keep your money in an ordinary (taxable) investment account?
According to the assumptions made in this essay:
Given the plausibility of longtermism, many effective altruists are interested in identifying tractable ways to shape the very long-term future for the better. One neglected and potentially tractable way to vastly improve the value of the long-term future is by identifying future-beneficial political and economic institutions and policies and acting to increase the probability of their implementation at various levels of political organization. Will MacAskill recently advocated age-weighted voting as one such strategy for better-aligning the interests of governments with the interests of futur... (Read more)
In this post, I introduce an ongoing research project with the aim of bringing effective giving to a wider range of altruists. The strategy combines 1) donation bundling (splitting between your favorite and an effective charity), 2) asymmetrical matching (offering higher matching rates for allocating more to an effective charity), 3) a form of donor coordination (to provide the matching). After conducting a series of experiments, we will test our strategy in the real-world using our new website GivingMultiplier.org. This project is a collaboration with Prof Joshua Greene and is supported by an... (Read more)
I have an interest in exploring neglected and "strange" opportunities for growth in developing settings. This one is the most recent one occupying my mind, I would appreciate a comment about which one of the "possible interventions" seems more interesting / impactful.
Access to Mobile Money might have direct implications in poverty reduction. Because most of the developing world is not banked, mobile money is reaching many households as the first opportunity to obtain all the benefits of traditional finance, with almost no entry level costs. So whatever benefits a household gets from ... (Read more)
Four years ago on 18 November 2016 I posted a piece called President Trump as a Global Catastrophic Risk in which I argued:
“Because of his character, his stated policies, and uncertainty about what he will do as President, Trump likely increases the risk of a global catastrophe. He likely increases two general risks, or drivers of risk: increased international tension and a rise of authoritarianism. He also likely increases four specific risks: climate change, nuclear war, pandemics and risks from emerging technologies.”
Four long years later, in this post I review some of the claims in that pi... (Read more)
I also posted this challenge on LessWrong; but you might not want to click over there if you want to avoid spoilers/anchoring/etc.
How can we sustainably engender good in the world? Sometimes it helps to take an outside view, rather than being anchored in the specifics of your situation. One thought experiment I use for this is: what could I do with a time machine? To avoid crazy time-travel shenanigans (which are probably optimal if you really have a time machine), pretend your time machine is single-use-only. You can take a one-way trip to any time-period (possibly with some friends) and try ... (Read more)
Late Edit: This post received way more attention than I expected. For important context, please see David Moss's first comment, especially his helpful visualization. "One thing worth bearing in mind is that these are very small proportions of the responses overall..." I am ultimately talking about small groups of people within the total number of survey respondents, and although I think my claims are true, I believe they are trivially so; I created this post largely for fun and practice, not for making important claims.
Note to EA Forum users: Please pardon the introductory content; this post i... (Read more)
Animal Charity Evaluators is currently running a donation drive for ACE Movement Grants, a fund that aims to support making the movement as a whole more effective. An anonymous donor is matching all donations up to $300k through Nov 9. (This is a non-illusory match per ACE’s marketing policy.)
ACE’s Movement Grants fund exists because the resilience of our credence in which interventions are most effective in animal advocacy is relatively low. While we still believe that our Recommended Charity Fund is likely to be the most effective way to help animals, when the resilience of that belief is lo... (Read more)
I figured I'd write this to articulate a concern, or really more of a vague suspicion, that makes me nervous whenever I read anything about Wild Animal Suffering. This is going to seem like I'm being really uncharitable, but I'll say it anyway in case other people feel similarly.
Whenever anyone talks about how we should look into this, because wild animals suffer a lot, I have this nagging feeling that they're going to do rigorous research for a few decades, then conclude that the majority of animals on Earth would be better off dead. At this point they'll presumably recommend that we start pu... (Read more)
[this post argues that due to the titular vegan value asymmetry, buying plant-based food is a morally negative act which leads to animal suffering (in expectation). This is not, however, a counter-argument to the moral correctness of being vegan]
Regardless of our individual values, it is quite normal to think of a moral act as a good one, and an immoral act as a bad one. By good I mean that it is better than morally neutral, and by bad I mean it is worse. 
However, there are many places where this binary comes apart. One is when we are acting on vegan principles. ... (Read more)
Want to advocate for effective giving but don’t know how?
This giving season from December 1 (Giving Tuesday) through to January 1 (New Years Day) we will be running an Effective Giving Advocacy Challenge.
Sign up and we’ll send a small action you can take each day to make a difference this giving season!
If you have suggestions for actions people can take to advocate for effective giving please email them to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or share them here in the comments.
Wave is a startup building mobile money—a way for people in developing countries to access financial services like savings and money transfer if they can't afford, or live too far away from, traditional banks. Lincoln is co-founder and head of product; Ben is an early engineer and CTO. We've both been part of the EA community since ~2011 (in fact, we met through NYC EA), and work on Wave for EA reasons.
We'll plan to do a big batch of answers on Friday, October 30th, in the afternoon (Eastern time), and will come back for more over the weekend / as long as the thread stays pinned.
Wave... (Read more)
If you enjoy the 80,000 Hours Podcast, and want to find more EA content to listen to while on-the-go or at the gym, check out EARadio.
EARadio consists of talks on topics relevant to effective altruists, taken from events like Effective Altruism Global. Much of the content is from recorded online videos, packaged for easy listening on the go!
EARadio was created by Chris Calabro and Patrick Brinich-Langlois. If you have suggestions for materials to add, you can get in contact with them here.
EARadio was originally a .impact project.
Before we had kids, Jeff and I fostered a couple of cats. One had feline AIDS and was very skinny. Despite our frugal grocery budget of the time, I put olive oil on her food, determined to get her healthier. I knew that stray cats were not a top global priority, and that this wasn’t even the best way of helping stray cats, but it was what I wanted to do.
. . . . .
The bike path near where I live has a lot of broken glass on the ground nearby. My family likes to go barefoot in the summer, and a lot of people walk their dogs there. Last summer I started bringing a container when we went out and cl