Constraints on effective altruism

The effective altruism community requires various resources that exist in limited supply, such as talent, funding, entrepreneurship, vetting, risk tolerance, and the ability to coordinate. These resources may be seen as constraints on effective altruism,  insofar as they limit the community's capacity to attain its goals.

Consider two organizations, both of which have ten staff and would like to increase capacity:

  1. Organization A: Has annual funding of $5m, so can fund more staff, and has been actively hiring for a year, but has been unable to find anyone suitable.
  2. Organization B: Has annual funding under $1m, so can only just cover current costs. Several suitably talented individuals have made speculative applications to the organization, but the organization could not afford to hire them.

Organization A is more talent constrained than funding constrained, and vice versa for Organization B. One might also say that Organization A faces more of a talent gap and organization B faces more of a funding gap (Todd 2015). We can generalize these concepts:...

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