Ray Dalio's potentially large contribution to Effective Altruism

by Harrison Edwards1 min read21st Nov 20211 comment


Public giving

Ray Dalio has a net worth of $20 billion and is the founder of one of the largest hedge funds, Bridgewater Associates. He recently tweeted an offer to give out 20,000 $50 gift cards which could be spent on the recipients' charity of choice. I found it surprising that he didn't take a more EA approach, as I have recently listened to him in interviews and have been reading his book Principles, in which he outlines his very rational and reflective approach to both his work and personal life.

His approach is demonstrated in the unusually Rationalist work culture he has created at Bridgewater, including employee "baseball cards" that openly indicate each person's strengths and weaknesses, a culture of idea-meritocracy where it is encouraged that anyone can thoughtfully disagree with anyone else, and several in-house apps, such as the Pain Button app, that foster structured reflection and resolution of difficult experiences or interactions.

Given this, I am fairly confident that EA will appeal to Ray and that it would be worthwhile for someone in donor relations to reach out to him (if they haven't already).

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Holden Karnofsky and Elie Hassenfeld founded Givewell as a charity club at Bridgewater while they were working there, so Dalio definitely knows about EA.