We’re featuring some opportunities and job listings at the top of this post. Some have pressing deadlines. (See also the May 2023 EA Newsletter.)
You can see previous updates on the "EA Organization Updates (monthly series)" topic page, or in our repository of past newsletters. Notice that there’s also an “org update” tag, where you can find more news and updates that are not part of this consolidated series.
These monthly posts originated as the "Updates" section of the EA Newsletter. Organizations submit their own updates, which we edit for clarity.
(If you think your organization should be getting emails about adding their updates to this series, please apply here.)
The organization updates are in alphabetical order.
Opportunities and jobs
Consider also checking opportunities listed on the EA Opportunities Board.
Virtual fellowships and courses
- A new round of EA Virtual Programs — free 8-week courses on topics in effective altruism, around a 3-hour commitment per week — will run from 5 June - 30 July. These include the Intro Program, In-Depth Program, and The Precipice Reading Group. Apply by 21 May.
- Pre-university students are invited to apply to Non-trivial’s online fellowship, happening from 10 July - 2 September. Fellows get expert guidance over 8 weeks to start an impactful research or entrepreneurial project, and there’s $30,000 in funding available for particularly promising projects. Apply by 11 June.
- Applications are open for the Introduction to ML Safety summer course, an 8-week virtual course running from 12 June - 14 August. The course is designed for people with ML backgrounds who are looking to get into empirical research careers focused on AI safety. Participants are expected to commit 5-10 hours per week to the program and will receive a $500 stipend upon completion. Apply by 22 May.
A contest and some events
- Applications are open for two EA conferences
- The Open Philanthropy AI Worldviews Contest plans to distribute $225,000 in prize money across six winning entries. They’re looking for novel considerations that might influence Open Philanthropy’s views on AI timelines and AI risk. Submit entries by 31 May.
- The Global Priorities Institute is hosting a series of free events open to the public (in-person in Oxford or remote): 2023 Memorial Lectures. Registration is required. The Atkinson Memorial Lecture will happen 9 June and the Parfit Memorial Lecture will follow on 13 June.
- Peter Singer’s Animal Liberation Now has been updated and will be available starting 23 May.
Centre for the Governance of AI (GovAI)
- Talent Management Associate (Oxford, £47.5k - £65k, apply by 26 May)
Effective Institutions Project
- Research Manager (Remote, $75k, apply by 22 May)
- Research Liaison, (Remote, $50k - $60k, apply by 28 May)
- Senior and Applied Researchers, Climate (Remote, US, UK or Europe, up to £85k/€85k/$120k)
- Applied Researcher (Remote, US, UK or Europe, up to £65k/$95k/€65k)
- Donor Relations Associates (Oakland, CA / Remote, $90.6k - $98k)
- Operations Administrative Specialist (Oakland, CA / Remote, $90.6k - $98k)
- Assorted research jobs (Oakland, CA / Remote)
Giving What We Can
- Research communicator (Remote, Global, £38k - £48k, apply by 28 May)
Happier Lives Institute
- Communications Manager (Remote, $35k-$45k, apply by 11 June)
- In-House Counsel (Remote, $241k)
- Research Analyst for Biosecurity & Pandemic Preparedness (Hybrid/Washington D.C., $122k-$137k, apply by 28 May)
- People Operations Assistant - Immigration and Global Workforce (Remote, $90.6k, apply by 31 May)
- New AI researcher role to open on May 18 (Remote, apply by 11 June)
This month on The 80,000 Hours Podcast, Rob interviewed Tim LeBon on how altruistic perfectionism is self-defeating and Ajeya Cotra on accidentally teaching AI models to deceive us, and Luisa interviewed Tom Davidson on how quickly AI could transform the world.
And on 80k After Hours, Luisa and Keiran talked about free will, and the consequences of never feeling enduring guilt or shame.
One of Anima International’s current top priorities is getting the Polish Minister of Agriculture to support the EU ban on cages in animal farming. Before the government elections in the Autumn, they, along with Compassion in World Farming, aim to present the minister with an impressive amount of signatures on a petition. To support this, they just released a new campaign - “With one voice/vote” - engaging seven Polish celebrities with different backgrounds, political opinions, ages, and audiences which has already been a huge hit in the media. You can see the video with the option for English subtitles here.
Anima International will be presenting at Effective Altruism Global in London later this month.
Animal Charity Evaluators
Crossroads Blog Series: Crossroads is Animal Charity Evaluators’s (ACE) new blog series that explores what human-focused social movements can teach us about nonhuman animal advocacy. In part one, ACE spoke with Christopher Eubanks, a social justice advocate, creative, and public speaker that combats all forms of injustice. In part two, ACE learned from Dr. Robyn Gulliver, a multi-award-winning environmentalist, writer, and researcher who has served as an organizer and leader of numerous local and national environmental organizations. Learn more.
Anthropic recently published a blog post on NIST's AI policy.
Berkeley Existential Risk Initiative (BERI)
BERI was recommended two grants through the Survival and Flourishing Fund’s recent S-Process round, both of which extend existing BERI projects: $522k to support Dr. Anthony Barrett’s work with UC Berkeley’s Center for Long-Term Cybersecurity on standards development for general-purpose AI, and an additional $481k to support the Center for Human-Compatible AI at UC Berkeley.
Centre for Effective Altruism
CEA published information about their search for a new Executive Director, including details about the hiring process and what they’re looking for in candidates. (Note that the deadline for candidate suggestions has now passed, but feedback is still welcome via this form.)
Centre for the Governance of AI (GovAI)
GovAI recently published their Quarterly Research Update. For those not signed up to the GovAI mailing list, the HTML version is here.
Family Empowerment Media
FEM recently completed a nine-month family planning campaign in Kano, Nigeria, reaching an audience base of 5.6 million over 2600 times.
The FEM team also tested their scaling model by airing short proof-of-concept campaigns in Abia, Anambra, Delta, Enugu, Kogi, Kano, Niger, and Ondo, reaching an estimated 20 million. FEM will do the same in Kaduna, Katsina, Ogun, Osun, Oyo, and Plateau in the coming months, bringing the total estimated listenership of these short campaigns to 35 million. These campaigns allow FEM to work out logistical hurdles and prepare to scale across Nigerian states once the content for longer campaigns is complete.
Simultaneously, FEM has begun research across fifteen states where the team believes their intervention can cost-effectively improve maternal and child health. FEM will conduct surveys and in-depth interviews and collect clinic data to determine the barriers to effective contraception faced in these regions.
Faunalytics has released a new study, Comparing U.S. Groups' Openness to Pro-Animal Actions, which surveyed thousands of people across the United States and asked how likely they would be to try a number of pro-animal actions, such as voting for a ballot measure, buying cruelty-free products, or giving up meat. The study includes an interactive graphing tool to easily view any and all results of interest.
Faunalytics is hiring for a Research Liaison. This new position will play an integral role in bringing research and data directly to the animal protection community, increasing impact for animals. Applications are due by May 28th.
Faunalytics is conducting their annual Community Survey and is requesting feedback from the EAA community. The survey is used to evaluate the impact of their research and learn how to improve the resources they provide. The survey should only take five minutes to complete, and participants have the option of entering to win a $100 gift card or animal charity donation.
Fish Welfare Initiative
Fish Welfare Initiative (FWI) recently published their quarterly update from Q1. Highlights include:
- The completed results from their mini-test assessing weight-based feeding systems as a mechanism to improve farmed fish water quality.
- Their decision to prioritize two species in China, grass carp and large yellow croaker, for which to develop welfare standards.
Meanwhile, FWI’s on-the-ground programming in India continues, currently operating with 78 farms to improve fish welfare via stocking density and water quality improvements.
This month, Founders Pledge published a long article discussing its approach to charity evaluation. This piece starts from first principles, and proceeds with a discussion of differences in charity effectiveness and a description of the different methodological tools in FP’s toolbox. FP’s research director, Matt Lerner, also received his official credential as a Superforecaster from Good Judgment, Inc.
FP also announced a successful close of the maiden fund of Pledge Ventures, a new, value-aligned venture fund that will invest exclusively in Founders Pledge member companies. Operating in partnership with Founders Pledge, Pledge Ventures will donate 85% of carried interest and up to 50% of management fee to Founders Pledge, and is a potentially transformative fundraising mechanism for FP. 95% of LPs are existing Founders Pledge members, so successful entrepreneurs who have committed to philanthropy are powering a future generation of impact-focused founders.
GiveDirectly’s zakat funding effort with Giving What We Can and Muslim Impact Lab has raised $185,000+ to date and at least 60% of those who gave were first-time GiveDirectly donors (2x what they usually see for campaigns), a sign this campaign has helped grow effective giving (read more in this EA Forum post).
They have been employing AI / Machine Learning tech to improve their ability to provide disaster relief after climate disasters, including last month in Mozambique. You can read more about this technology in this blog post.
In January this year, GiveWell directed an $87.5 million grant to Malaria Consortium's seasonal malaria chemoprevention (SMC) program. This is the largest grant in GiveWell's 16-year history, and is expected to save over 20,000 lives, mostly children's lives, that otherwise would have been lost to malaria.
GiveWell has published a page about this grant, along with the following other new research materials:
- Pages on a $71.5 million grant for Helen Keller International's vitamin A supplementation (VAS) program, and an $11.2 million grant for Sightsavers' deworming program.
- Short notes on why GiveWell is deprioritizing investigations into neonatal vitamin A supplementation (NVAS) and programs to increase the supply of midwives.
GiveWell has also published a blog post about its grant to fund the implementation of the RTS,S malaria vaccine, plus its plans to explore other approaches to malaria control.
GiveWell top charity, New Incentives, has published a "day in the life" blog post (with photos) about one of its field officers, Abubakar Aliyu. In the remote areas of Nigeria where New Incentives works, its 1,500 field officers use simple tools to verify eligibility, confirm receipt of cash transfers, and effectively communicate with community members. This post is recommended for anyone who's curious to know more about what New Incentives' program looks like up close.
Giving What We Can
Giving What We Can is hiring a research communicator. This role will help Giving What We Can produce engaging content to communicate core effective giving concepts and our research, as well as flexing to help with some operations work at times. Read more about this remote role and apply by the 28th May.
A new paper “Who gives? Characteristics of those who have taken the Giving What We Can pledge” has been published by researchers Matti Wilks, Jessica McCurdy, Paul Bloom. Giving What We Can is excited to see the results of this paper which concluded that “GWWC pledgers were better at identifying fearful faces, more morally expansive and higher in actively open-minded thinking, need for cognition and two subscales of utilitarianism and, tentatively, lower in social dominance orientation.”
Global Priorities Institute
The Global Priorities Institute (GPI) has a new Director. Eva Vivalt, Assistant Professor in Economics at the University of Toronto, joined GPI in April to take over the directorship. Eva has written a blog about her current plans for the role (crosspost in the EA Forum). They’d also like to use this opportunity to thank Hilary Greaves, who was GPI's inaugural Director from the establishment of the institute in 2018 until her term ended in 2022.
Happier Lives Institute
HLI just published a shallow report on Lead Exposure, the third of the three reports commissioned by Founders Pledge. The research indicates that lead exposure in childhood has very long-lasting and overall large effects on well-being.
They are hiring a communications manager to lead all aspects of external and internal communications and be responsible for promoting HLI’s recommendations and methodology to their target audiences. For more information, see the job advert or contact them at firstname.lastname@example.org.
HLI’s Director, Dr. Michael Plant will be debating Taking Happiness Seriously: Can We? Should We? Would It Matter If We Did? with Professor Mark Fabian, Assistant Professor of Public Policy at Warwick University. Mark has recently published A Theory of Subjective Wellbeing with Oxford University Press. Michael is attending with Samuel Dupret (HLI researcher).
The Humane League
The Humane League (THL) has set an ambitious goal to spare 6,700,000 hens from extreme confinement this year. See more here.
Additionally, THL published their 2022 Annual Report and their first quarterly progress report for 2023. Both provide detailed insights to THL’s mission to end the abuse of animals raised for food, and the global progress being made for farmed animals.
Legal Priorities Project
The Legal Priorities Project published their Annual Report for 2022, outlining key successes, statistics, bottlenecks, and issues from their work in 2022. It also summarizes their priorities for 2023 and their methodology for updating their priorities.
They also launched the Legal Priorities Blog. The blog features shorter pieces by LPP teammates and invited authors, as well as some organizational updates. Some of the pieces published include:
- Highlights from LPP’s field-building efforts
- Riley Harris: Summary – Protecting future generations: A global survey of legal academics, by Eric Martínez and Christoph Winter
- Matthijs Maas: Paths untaken – The history, epistemology, and strategy of technological restraint, and lessons for AI
Matthijs Maas gave a talk on “Pausing AI? The Ethics, History, Epistemology, and Strategy of Technological Restraint” at the Chalmers AI Research Centre of the Chalmers University of Technology in Gothenburg, Sweden.
Research Affiliate Cecil Abungu was one of three respondents invited to speak to UN member states about the Secretary General's Policy Brief “To Think and Act for Future Generations,” which proposes strategies to increase the protection of future generations.
Luke Muehlhauser, Open Philanthropy’s senior program officer for AI Governance and Policy, shared a list of 12 tentative policy ideas that he believes could help reduce existential risk from AI.
Senior research analyst Ajeya Cotra and Vox reporter Kelsey Piper co-launched Planned Obsolescence, a blog about AI alignment and the future of AI.
Rethink Priorities (RP)
- Does decreasing the price of plant-based substitutes like margarine actually decrease animal consumption? (Senior Economist Samara Mendez, Senior Research Manager Jacob Peacock, and Research Assistant Ben Stevenson)
- What can we do to reduce the use of harmful rodenticides in the U.S.? (Researcher Holly Elmore)
- Would better weather forecasts improve agriculture in low- and middle-income countries? (Senior Researcher Aisling Leow, Research Analyst Bruce Tsai, and Senior Researcher Jenny Kudymowa)
- How can we fix indoor air contamination? (Associate Researcher Jam Kraprayoon and colleagues from 1Day Sooner)
- Could international agreements (e.g. between the U.S. and China) help make AI development safer? (Associate Researcher Oliver Guest)
RP’s newest blog posts include:
- Risk Awareness Moments—a concept that Oliver Guest developed to think about AI safety
- Intermediate goals for reducing risks from nuclear weapons—the first of a four-part series by Senior Research Manager Michael Aird and collaborator Will Aldred
- The Existential Security Team (XST)—formerly the General Longtermism Team—published their strategy for the rest of 2023, written by Research Manager Ben Snodin
Epoch—an AI research initiative fiscally sponsored by Rethink Priorities—launched a dashboard of key numbers from their research (with links and levels of confidence) to help understand the present and future of machine learning.
- Scoring forecasts from the 2016 “Expert Survey on Progress in AI (AI Impacts blog)
- Insect Farming Is Booming. But Is It Cruel? (Wired Magazine)
- Looking Closer At U.S. Attitudes Toward Factory Farming (Faunalytics)
- Using AI To Reduce Human-Animal Conflicts (Faunalytics)
The Life You Can Save
Based on the transformative power in education, The Life You Can Save has launched an Education For All fund which includes new recommended charities Educate Girls and Teaching at the Right Level Africa.