Ian Turner

225 karmaJoined Jan 2023


Sorted by New


I downvoted because the post doesn’t seem to show a good understanding of what GiveDirectly is already doing about fraud and it doesn’t appear that the offer gave GiveDirectly a chance to comment.

Thanks for the quick and detailed response!

Mapping this language onto the EA landscape, it sounds like most GiveWell-recommended or GiveWell-style charities, programs, or grants would not be considered ODA or “Aid”, do you agree with that?

One of the problems that I observe in this conversation is just the meaning of the word “Aid”. It seems like in some cases this can refer to directly supporting a government’s budget, while in other cases it could refer to a foreign NGO directly administering a program. Should we expect such diverse interventions to have equivalent risk of corruption or institutional effects? To me they seem quite different.

I think it’s also just very difficult for experts to adopt a new paradigm. In transportation the experts consistently overestimate.

Chart showing US DOT estimates gs actuals

It’s hard to take these responses too literally since the median response for chicken was 1,000 and the average American consumes over 1,000 chickens per lifetime.

It would be interesting to focus group or hear from some of the respondents about the process they used to produce their answers.

In trying to understand the expected adoption of new practices such as dietary changes, it would be worth consulting with experts on diffusion of innovations. This field of study is explicitly concerned with the question of how and why people decide to adopt (or not adopt) new technologies or practices. Needless to say it's a complicated question and the answers are not always obvious.

For a good introduction, read Diffusion of Innovations, by Everett M. Rogers, or for a briefer introduction, read the Wikipedia page.

You might consider speaking with some charities that did register in other markets to see how it affected their fundraising. For example the Against Malaria Foundation is registered in 13 countries.

My guess is this is fairly low EV because most charities can receive donations indirectly. For example, the Fish Welfare Initiative is not registered as a charity in Canada; but the Rethink Charity Foundation (which is registered in Canada) will forward donations via their RC Forward project.

Also, donors using a DAF can often donate internationally without additional intermediaries.

It’s a very useful signal as a hiring manager, assuming you trust the reference, but also leads to problematic incentives where people feel like they need to spend resources on being liked by those giving references in order to get a job. “Spend resources” here can be understood to include a wide variety of behaviors, including good things like working well with others, innocuous things like networking, but also dangerous things like flattery or (for example) not advertising that the giver of references is a harasser.

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