evelynciara

I studied computer science at Cornell University. I am a public interest technologist interested in using CS to address pressing social problems. (she/her)

"It is important to draw wisdom from many different places. If we take it from only one place, it becomes rigid and stale. Understanding others, the other elements, and the other nations will help you become whole." —Uncle Iroh

Sequences

EA Survey 2018 Series
EA Survey 2019 Series

Comments

EA Forum feature suggestion thread

We should add the ability to convert posts to questions (or back to regular posts, but that's tricky because answers would have to be converted to regular comments).

Also, the editor should automatically suggest converting your post to a linkpost or question post if the title or body text matches certain patterns. For example, if you write "Crossposted from X" or "This is a linkpost" at the top, it can infer that your post is most likely a linkpost. I see a lot of posts from inexperienced users that are classified as regular posts even though they're intended to be linkposts or questions, so I think this would be helpful to them.

Propose and vote on potential EA Wiki entries

Yeah, maybe something broader like "democracy" or "liberal democracy." Perhaps we could rename the "direct democracy" tag to "democracy"?

Decreasing populism and improving democracy, evidence-based policy, and rationality

I appreciate that you did a cause report on this topic! I'm also interested in finding good ways to protect and improve liberal democracy.

I disagree with your assessment that "Generally, economic policy is hard to affect through philanthropy and as such this does not seem to be a very tractable cause." In the most recent 80,000 Hours interview, Alexander Berger cited macroeconomic stabilization as an Open Phil success story:

...we have funded for several years around macroeconomic stabilization policy. And I think the federal reserve and macroeconomic policymakers in the U.S. have really moved in our direction and adopted a lot of more expansionary policies and become more focused on increasing employment, relative to worrying about inflation. I think it’s really hard to attribute impact, so I’m not sure how much of that has to do with our funding, but it’s an area where I think the world has really moved our way, and we might’ve played a small role in that, and the stakes I think are quite high in terms of human wellbeing there. So I see that as a big win.

Also, anecdotally, I think there's been a lot of movement in the U.S. toward "free-market progressive" policies on zoning reform, occupational licensing, and non-competes. For example, several U.S. municipalities have abolished single-family zoning, and the Biden administration recently issued an executive order targeting occupational licensing and non-competes. And I think the YIMBY movement has grown a lot. All of these reforms would likely promote economic growth and reduce inequality in my opinion. So I'm a lot more optimistic about economic reforms.

I suggest looking into two organizations:

  • Niskanen Center: One of their key policy areas is defending liberal democracy (a.k.a. the open society) from authoritarian populism.
  • The Neoliberal Project / Center for New Liberalism aims to push back against left- and right-populism by building a movement around a new "neoliberal" political identity. Their theory of change is that politics is organized around group identities by default, so in order to create policy change, you need to create a new political identity around advocating for a set of policies. They have chapters around the world that do local political advocacy, like the YIMBY movement does. (Disclaimer: I've been very involved in online neoliberal politics.)
Propose and vote on potential EA Wiki entries

I like this idea, sort of. I think we should create a politics and policy "mega-tag" (the tags that show up in white, like Existential risk) while keeping the others as sub-tags.

Propose and vote on potential EA Wiki entries

Open society

The ideal of an open society - a society with high levels of democracy and openness - is related to many EA causes and policy goals. For example, open societies are associated with long-run economic growth, and an open society is conducive to the "long reflection." This tag could host discussion about the value of open societies, the meaning of openness, and how to protect and expand open societies.

A Twitter Bot that regularly tweets current top posts from the EA Forum

This is cool! I stay away from Twitter, but I can see this increasing EA's profile among those who use it.

You should write about your job

What kind of data science are you interested in? The DSSG fellowship is focused on data science for academic research.

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