Today, I present to you a groundbreaking proposal with the potential to create a paradigm shift in philanthropy and global stewardship. The mission: to send 10 of the world's most affluent individuals into space to experience the "overview effect," a powerful cognitive transformation that could inspire them to become agents of change for our planet and its inhabitants.
The "overview effect" is a phenomenon experienced by astronauts during spaceflight, often while observing Earth from orbit. This profound sense of interconnectedness and the realisation of our planet's vulnerability have been known to inspire a heightened sense of responsibility towards preserving and protecting Earth.
Financial Implications and Potential Returns
A commercial crew launch to low Earth orbit using SpaceX's Crew Dragon costs approximately $55 million per seat. Thus, sending 10 billionaires into space would require an investment of $550 million.
Assuming the "overview effect" encourages these individuals to increase their annual philanthropic efforts by a modest 1%, the impact could be staggering. With a combined net worth of roughly $1 trillion, a 1% increase in annual giving would result in an additional $10 billion in charitable contributions each year, an 18-fold ROI.
Importance, Tractability, and Neglectedness
Importance: This proposal aims to foster a significant shift in the philanthropic mindset of some of the world's wealthiest individuals by leveraging the "overview effect." This cognitive transformation could result in increased charitable contributions towards global challenges such as climate change, global health and development, and extinction risks.
Tractability: The proposal is feasible given the current advancements in commercial space travel, such as SpaceX's Crew Dragon. Although the initial investment is substantial, the potential for a substantial return on investment through increased philanthropy provides a strong incentive to pursue the project.
Neglectedness: While the concept of the "overview effect" is known within the space community, its potential impact on the philanthropic behaviour of billionaires has not been widely explored. This proposal brings forward a unique and innovative approach to encouraging large-scale philanthropy, addressing a relatively neglected aspect of global problem-solving.
The proposal to send billionaires into space to experience the "overview effect" is firmly grounded in both scientific understanding and financial analysis. The initial investment of $550 million carries the potential to generate a substantial increase in philanthropic giving, which could dramatically impact our world for the better.
55,000,000 x 10