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We've heard that our name, CEEALAR (Centre for Enabling EA Learning & Research), is not the best.  What would a better name be? To expand, there are potentially two names: one for the hotel building, and one for the charity. The charity name can't contain the word "hotel", and perhaps shouldn't contain "EA". And does "Athena" - the current name of the hotel - pass the reversal test? (Previous discussion on our Facebook group).





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The Organization Formerly Known as Centre for Enabling EA Learning & Research (TOFKACEEALAR)?


More seriously, perhaps you could look into the history of utopian communities for inspiration? Some had nice names, such as Owen's 'New Harmony'. Another option is to use the form 'x House', where x is the name of some suitable person or idea (as an example, someone previously suggested 'Bentham House').

I like Athena, or Athena Centre!

In case you want lesser-known goddesses (eg because TOFKACEEALAR wants to branch out), there's also Aletheia, Hedone and Harmonia

Vaidehi Agarwalla
I like quite like Aletheia (truth in greek), but Athena is also good.
Hedone seems appropriate given that Blackpool is famous for its 'pleasure beach.'

One downside risk is that it might be even harder to fundraise for "Hedone Hotel on pleasure beach"

I like Xenea, a combination of Xenia (ancient Greek concept of hospitality) and EA.

Other ideas that I've thought about but like a bit less:

How about something like LEARN? -- not intended as an acronym; just "learn" with the letters "EA" in it highlighted in some way.

One could even play with the fact that "EA" also appears in "research" and consider a logo where these letters are highlighted the same, shared, ...

My sense is:

  • Having a separate name for the org and the hotel unnecessarily introduces more confusion/complexity.

  • Defaulting to Athena because it happens to be the name of the building already, seems highly improbable to coincidentally be the best option.

  • For clarity, something that concisely describes the mission or vision of the org and place feels best to me. Arepo's suggestion of 'Center for Altruists in Residence' hits the sweet spot on the specific enough to broad enough spectrum IMO. It also has an acronym which people will all pronounce the same and spell correctly (C.A.R.)

  • Using the names of philosophers etc runs the risk of people having (potentially negative) ideas about the person in question, which don't align with the purpose/vision/mission of the hotel. So personally I'd avoid that to ensure people who should be attracted, are attracted.

I thought "EA hotel" was pretty great as a straightforward description, good substitutes might have a word for "ea" and a word for "hotel". So like:

Bentham's Base
Helpers' House

Swap with Lodge, Hollow, Den if alliteration is too cute
 e.g. "Bentham's House", "Bentham's Lodge" both sound pretty serious.

Or just forget precedent and brand something new e.g. Runway (or Runway Athena)

Some "just kidding" alliterative options that I couldn't resist:
Crypto crib, Prioritization Place, Utilitarian's Union, Consequentialist Club, Greg's iGloo

I imagine most people reading your question don't want to list out a bunch of bad ideas. But I think that might be what's needed at this point, because the more we enumerate (and eliminate), the more clear it becomes whether or not CEEALAR is actually the best option. Or maybe seeing a bunch of bad ideas will spark a good one in someone's mind. Here:

Centre for Effective Learning, Centre for Learning Good, Blackpool Pastures, Hotel Hedon, Hotel for Effective Research, Maxgood Productions, Maxwell Hotel, EA Retreat House.

Yeah this is difficult.

I would encourage people to list  'bad' ideas if that's what they're thinking of. It's good brainstorming strategy to not self-censor, and we ended up with the current alphabet soup because of a lack of inspiration last time!

I like "EA Retreat House"

So-Low Growth
I strongly dislike this and think it gives off the wrong impression about the purpose of the Hotel.

Building: Athena House? Athena Centre? Charity: I guess it should describe that you give people funding and autonomy to focus on their high-priority work, together. Independent Research Centre? Impact Hub?

Effective Hospitality

I've been thinking about this name on and off, and Effective Hospitality was the name that my thoughts kept returning to. I'd use it first as a name for what CEEALAR does: doing the most good possible by hosting people.

The name generalizes very well, in my opinion. Specifically, CEEALAR and/or the hotel could become "EH Blackpool". The idea might spread, and there could soon be "EH Tokyo", "EH Munich" and others (just as today there are effective altruism groups that call themselves "EA <location>").

The other primary advantage is that the name is quite self-explanatory.

The other primary advantage is that the name is quite self-explanatory.

When I hear the name, I picture a hotel chain trying to provide excellent and efficient service. It doesn't feel like it gets to the heart of the EA Hotel for me.

In new zealand "Hospitality" is a field of craft encompassing tourism, hotels, and food services, so I'd feel like this name should be reserved for any cause areas in that domain, but is that not the case in the rest of the world?

I think the name CEEALAR grew on me by now, maybe because it is rewarding for me to be able to remember it correctly, and maybe because it has become kind of an inside joke that the name is a bit awkward. Random ideas anyway:

  • Altruists' harbor
  • Scout manor
  • Residence and Co-Working Centre (RANC Centre)
  • Residence for Altruistic Learning and Doing (RALD)
  • Altruists' Residence for Co-Working (ARFORC)
  • Altruistic Living And Doing Stuff (Altruistic LADS)

It could even be Altruistic Living and Building - Altruistic Labs! I feel like that name embodies what the organization does within it (enabling people to test various generally early-stage approaches to altruism) which would be a good idea whether the proposed name is an acronym or not.

Looking at similar organizations inside and outside EA (like Berkeley REACH) for naming inspiration also seems like a good idea.

For the sake of getting more feedback on existing suggestions, I'm going to post the eligible ones from the existing FB thread as responses to this 'answer', with clarifications about whether they apply to the hotel or the org (nb in cases where they could make sense for either, I'll post a separate entry for each). 

Please up/downvote according to how much you approve of each, keeping in mind the acronyms they'll form (whether as a plus or minus) - I suggest using single up/downvotes, since regular forum contributors get to adjust karma more with strong votes, but don't seem any more likely to have a better sense of aesthetics than passers by. But feel free to comment on any you feel strongly for/against!

Large Utilon Collider (for the building)

Centre for Altruists In Residence (for the org)


Centre for hosting high impact projects (for the org)

ATHENA - Accommodation for Teaching, Humanitarianism, Education, and Neglected Altruism (for the org)

Altruists In Residence (for the org)

Altruism Incubator Project (for the org)

Future House (for the building)

High Impact Hotel (for the building)

Altruists In Residence (for the building)

ATHENA - Accommodation for Teaching, Humanitarianism, Education, and Neglected Altruism (for the building)

Large Utilon Collider (for the org)

Athena Flourishing Fellowship (for the org)

Effective Altruism Lodge

Effective Altruism House

Eapartments (for the org)

Eapartment (for the building)

Erstwhile Athena Hotel - EA Hotel (for the building)

Social Analytics Institute (for the org)

Analytic Altruism Incubator (for the org)

Athena Altruism Centre (for the org)

Athena Altruism Centre (for the building)

Centre for Altruists In Residence (for the building)

Apollo Hotel (for the building)

Impact incubator project (for the org)

High Impact Hosting (for the org)

Blackpool Research Residence (for the building)

Future House (for the org)

Guesthouse of Imagination (for the building)

High Impact House (for the org)

High Impact House (for the building)

High Impact Accommodation and Hospitality (for the org)

High Impact Accommodation (for the org)

Altruism Incubator (for the org)

High Impact Hospitality (for the org)

The Raven (for the building)

Yay Hotel (for the building)

Colbourn College (for the org)

Colbourn College (for the building)

Nb This one was not Greg's idea, and I suspect he'd be quite uncomfortable with it. But don't vote for it for that reason alone ;)

The Derek Zoolander Center for Kids Who Do Altruism Good and Who Wanna Learn to Do Other Stuff Good Too

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"Athena" fails the reversal test, but the reversal test isn't always applicable when the historical continuity is actually part of the thing's appeal! Some things work that way!

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