Constance Li

Co-Founder @ Impactful Animal Advocacy
791 karmaJoined Sep 2022Working (6-15 years)United States
www.impactfulanimaladvocacy.org/

Bio

Participation
2

I started out as a animal advocate in 2001 at the age of 12. Nearly a decade later, I discovered effective altruism and decided to start down an earning to give career path as a physician. Currently, I own a health services business and donate my time and money to direct work in animal advocacy. You usually can find me at the Impactful Animal Advocacy slack community.

How others can help me

If you are a funder, researcher, or MEL specialist interested in helping out more in the animal advocacy space, your talents are sorely needed! Please join the slack and send me a DM so I can get you plugged in to the best channels to collaborate with others in these neglected fields within the movement. 

Comments
79

It's really sad to hear about Steven Wise passing away. His work was a game-changer in how we see animals and their rights. Founding the Nonhuman Rights Project was a huge step forward, especially with those groundbreaking cases for chimps and elephants. Even though Happy the elephant's case didn't turn out as hoped, it sparked a massive conversation and got people thinking about animals in a way they hadn't before.

Wise's story is super inspiring. It's a big loss, but what he started isn't stopping anytime soon.

@Nicholas Kruus this is what the author, Chris Bryant, had to say:

You are quite right that there has been a tough couple of years for plant-based products recently. I think this is definitely an issue which warrants exploring, but I decided not to go into it here because I was pretty space-limited so I wanted to stick to the main question whether Veganuary has been impactful. 

There are some graphs, like sales of vegetarian foods, where I didn't have more recent data, so they stop in 2020-ish. There's also a couple of places where I trimmed the graphs, because some data, while interesting, was not relevant to the point I wanted to make and made the graph much less clear.

For example, if you extend the 'Google searches about veganism' graph beyond 2020, you'll see that it starts to go down slightly after 2021, but it still peaks in January. Since my point there is that it peaks in January (and it's not relevant whether Jan 23 < Jan 22)  I decided to go with a graph that would make the point most clearly in the limited space!

That said, there are a few things I discovered when researching this piece that didn't make it into the publication, but are definitely worth looking at further!

  1. There does seem to be a peak in interest around 2020/21, and subsequent years have been more challenging
  2. There may have been a surge in anti-vegan media since around the same time (the media stories per month graph breaks down massively after 2020, and shows so many stories in non-January months that it makes the rest of the graph impossible to read)

On Maya's point about displacement, I'd recommend this piece that we wrote about the evidence for displacement: https://bryantresearch.co.uk/insight-items/alternative-meats-demand/

In terms of disentangling Veganuary vs. new years resolutions, I would say that the apparent uptick in vegan activity when Veganuary started around 2014 is some evidence that the campaign itself had an impact.I haven't done this, but it would also be interesting to compare between countries! As you mentioned, Veganuary has been mostly UK-focused, so it would be interesting to compare interest/increase in veganism in January in the UK vs. the US, for example!

 

Here is the link to the full Slack thread. If you are not a part of the Impactful Animal Advocacy Slack, you can join here.

Yeah I'm surprised this evidence was easily available, but not included in the article. Very interesting. I have tagged the author in a thread about this article on the Impactful Animal Advocacy Slack so I will report back anything he has to say on the matter. 

FWIW I do have a lot of respect for the author and this is the first time I've found myself puzzled about his output. 

@Karthik Tadepalli see my comment below:

UK vegan product sales (where Veganuary is most active) went down overall in 2023. This article from Nov 2023 highlights this fact and attempts to reconcile them in the context of outside economic forces.

However, we do have to consider that meat consumption is increasing and plant-based product sales are decreasing in most countries. So it is still very possible that Veganuary guarded against even worse outcomes in the UK.

Hey thanks for sharing this. This is quite impressive results from Veganuary. 

My only criticism is that the article, despite being published in 2024, seems to leave out important context. For example, UK vegan product sales (where Veganuary is most active) went down overall in 2023. This article from Nov 2023 highlights this fact and attempts to reconcile them in the context of outside economic forces. The article also doesn't mention that per capita meat consumption has been rising in the UK. Is there a reason why these details were left out of the article? They seem like important context to include.

This is a really great new initiative! I have one question and one plug.

Question: What does this mean for the animal charity meta-fundraising intervention (#5 on this list) that was supposed to be on the table for CE's flagship nonprofit incubation program?

Plug: For folks that are already making grants (from their foundation/DAF/other), please check out CE's effective grantmaking program. It is best suited for people who are newer to grantmaking and have a lot of initial applications to evaluate. If you don't have the time to apply and go through the program, just get a copy of their book, How to Launch a High-Impact Foundation.

I would just like to second that AVA is a very welcoming conference that invites open discussion of different tactics and strategies. Impactful Animal Advocacy hosted a meetup at AVA in July 2023 where attendees respectfully shared their criticisms of EA

An EA meetup was also held at AVA 2022 and was the most well attended meetup that wasn't on the formal program. So if you come to AVA, you will both have plenty of like-minded folks to talk with and may benefit from learning about other perspectives.

Edit 12-6-23: Corrected the post link

This seems like a good place to plug Dr. Michael Greger's new book, How Not to Age. It has >13k citations and talks about what people can do to slow down aging. Pre-orders are quite important for determining the marketing and ranking of book and this particular book comes out Dec 5 so there are just a couple more days to contribute to pre-order numbers. I'm told his books are quite popular in China, which could be hugely meaningful in combating the rise of animal product consumption in that country. Additionally, in the spirit of ETG, 100% of book sales go to charity!

Wow, seeing as HILTS is hands down my favorite podcast so now I’m quite excited to see what new and exciting content will come from the forum. Welcome to the EA Forum team!

Yes I am also curious about the difference. I’ve been using them interchangeably.

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