Working (6-15 years of experience)
136Joined May 2022


"Theory of change: EA promotes caring about effectiveness over other goals like getting credit, but wanting credit or recognition for your work is natural. Rewarding people for maximizing impact over credit increases the health and future effectiveness of the community."

You're asking people to trade-off public credit/recognition with the possibility of anonymous cash prizes. I'm sure no one is going to turn down free money, but I'm unconvinced many people would have kept their brilliant ideas to themselves were it not for the chance to receive $5-10k.

This sounds more like a prize to reward people for 'doing the right thing', than a prize that will actually lead to people 'doing the right thing' more often. There's nothing wrong with that per say - but I wanted to bring that out and see if I have misunderstood the idea.

Thanks for the comment. I don't think that these recommendations would significantly change GW's funding allocation to be honest, they just lead to more accurate estimates of what will still be a very cost-effective program.

My caveat is, I think there is a larger potential decrease in cost-effectiveness from the second point on burden of malaria. It's unsatisfactory I think that the estimates in several of these smaller countries are significantly different. It's possible that the cost-effectiveness of SMC in some of these geographies could be quite a bit lower than Givewell estimates, simply because there is less malaria in those countries than previously thought. 

One of the problems I would have liked to have gotten into - is that other febrile diseases are often misdiagnosed as malaria (or no diagnosis is performed other than just assuming fever = malaria). 

My hypothesis going into this analysis was that I might be able to investigate this further, and perhaps show that some of the disease burden is not malaria. But I haven't really turned up many good resources on this. 

Given that Givewell have a lot more resources than just me & malaria is a big part of their programming, I think best way forwards is for them to look into the issue and try to get to the bottom of how much malaria is really out there.

I really think you need to commit to reading everyone's work, even if it's an intern skimming it for 10 minutes as a sifting stage.

The way this is set up now - ideas proposed by unknown people in community are unlikely to be engaged with, and so you won't read them.

Look at the recent cause exploration prizes. Half the winners had essentially no karma/engagement and were not forecasted to win. If open phanthropy hadn't committed to reading them all, they could easily have been missed.

Personally, yes I am much less likely to write something and put effort in if I think no one will read it.

I think you can get involved with the development of NICE guidelines as someone who has used these services: 

You would be part of a panel along with professionals/experts reviewing the evidence. Might be worth considering!

If I understood your post correctly, you have considered the cost-effectiveness of recommending a policy change to NICE, and have not included the cost of treatment. 

I think if the cost of treatment were included, then this intervention might well be cost-effective for the UK NHS and worth them supporting - but would be much less cost-effective than GiveWell top charities.

Looking at the winners/honorable mentions of the prizes - I'm struck by how new most of those mentioned are to the forum.

Of the 26 names above who had a join date next to them, the median date of joining was 2021.

Only 3 people had posted on the forum for more than 5 years.

Of the 20 names I could easily identify as male/female; 9 were female and 11 were male. 

I find this argument compelling and have thought the same thing before. 
Keen to see what comes up in response to this.

This is a great piece - and a worthy winner of the prize.

I have some concerns about tractability. I can easily see how lobbying in LMICs could lead to regulation banning pesticides etc. This would be cheap to try, and seems obviously worth investigating and researching to develop a proposal.

But banning XYZ this will not necessarily solve the problem - because we know that the state's capacity to enforce regulation is weak in many of these contexts. There already exist laws on other forms of pollution which are not enforced in practice.

Against that - consider case of Bangladesh and banning lead in petrol. Basically an overnight success. to Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation,is now free of lead.

My guess would be that if there are pesticides etc. that can be replaced by less damaging alternatives, with little to no loss in yield/performance - then this could be easily tractable. But that it isn't going to be very tractable if it requires small-scale farmers to make financial sacrifices.

Congratulations on running the competition. Reading and judging over 150 essays is no mean feat.

Interested to hear what the next steps will be for the ideas within these submissions, and excited to hear about any new projects or funding streams in these areas.

Very sorry to hear you have long covid, I hope you feel better soon.

I'm personally unconvinced that this is a neglected area.

Over $1bn is committed to researching this, with public and private initiatives planned.

And as you point out, there is a large market of consumers who need this in wealthy countries, which should mean normal market incentives to develop drugs apply.

I don't think you need be embarrassed - you responded politely & not defensively. 
That's definitely rarer on the internet than minor arithmetic errors!

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