These are the world’s highest impact career paths according to our research - 80,000 Hours


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We thought we should highlight a substantial new article we've published which is very relevant to the effective altruism community, and one of the most important - if not the most important - we will publish this year:

These are the world’s highest impact career paths according to our research

It outlines our new suggested process which anyone can use to generate a short-list of high-impact career options given their personal situation.

It then describes the five key categories of career we most often recommend, which should produce at least one good option for almost all graduates, and why we're enthusiastic about them.

Finally, it lists and explains the top 10 'priority paths' we want to draw attention to, because we think they can enable to right person to do an especially large amount of good for the world.

Over time our views have changed a lot, and understandably it takes a while for people's perceptions of 80,000 Hours' advice to catch up. We hope that putting our key conclusions on many issues into this single article will make it easier for readers to figure out what we believe today.

Here's a brief summary from the article:

"In a nutshell

To generate a short-list of high-impact career options given your personal situation, you can use the following process:

  1. Choose the 2-4 global problems you think are most pressing.
  2. Identify the ‘key bottlenecks’ to progress within each of these.
  3. Identify career paths that help relieve those bottlenecks.
  4. Focus on the options where you have the best personal fit.
  5. Make quantitative estimates of the impact of your top options.
  6. Start to narrow down, or if there are no suitable options, go back to the start.

When it comes to specific options, right now we often recommend the following five key categories, which should produce at least one good option for almost all graduates:

  1. Research in relevant areas
  2. Government and policy relevant to top problem areas
  3. Work at effective non-profits
  4. Apply an unusual strength to a needed niche
  5. Otherwise, earn to give

We’re especially excited about the following “priority paths”. They’re extremely competitive, but great options to test out if there’s a chance they’re a good fit. Use the table of contents to skip ahead and read a description of each path.

  1. AI policy and strategy
  2. AI safety technical research
  3. Grantmaker focused on top problem areas
  4. Work in effective altruist organisations
  5. Operations management in organisations focused on global catastrophic risks and effective altruism
  6. Global priorities researcher
  7. Biorisk strategy and research
  8. China specialists
  9. Earning to give in quantitative trading
  10. Decision-making psychology research and implementation"

Continue reading...

We look forward to hearing what you think below!