Cool work! Props that you allow for people using their own discount rate, as your first footnote is a good point.I think that for transparency and ease of reader understanding, you ought to link the 80K's article on grantmaking for most-pressing problems. Similarly, linking info on Squiggle would be good.Also, best to clarify that this review is only about "working at a government agency that funds relevant research", and that this is only one out of their 3 mentioned highly-effective careers related to grantmaking (at the bottom), and that the other two would need a different analysis.I also think that if the intent is to advise on careers, you need to do some analysis of the team of E-ARPA. Variables that come to mind are: size of team, how many of each role, how senior each person seems (for thoughts on how soon a person can get hired in such a role, and maybe even, in the case of junior employees, where they could go from there career-capital-wise), and a rough guesstimate of how much each role contributed to the overall annual grantmaking decisions of E-ARPA.Also a minor wording note.. You say:"We chose ARPA-E because other ARPA agencies are explicitly called out by 80,000 Hours profile of grantmaking (i.e., DARPA, IARPA)" "Called out" has negative connotations, so I'd probably say "mentioned", "referred to", or "brought up" instead. That terminology confused me--I thought you were saying you only chose ARPA-E because the others had been essentially ruled out. I was a bit aghast thinking you'd chosen an example in a category where others had already been shown to be moot or something , and that's why I dug for and read the original 80K piece >.>Phew, sorry that was so much seemingly-critical feedback, but to clarify I (not a researcher or data scientist) think what you did do is good and I'm happy you reviewed this career path, which tends to, I think, be unfortunately skipped in many career discussions. I strong upvoted the post.
Hi, I hope you do leave this up a week longer at least!
The FTX fiasco meant a lot of people were overwhelmed and are just now getting spoons back for tasks like this. I will be repromoting this survey to the EA Austin community tonight as I think hardly anyone here will have filled it out. Hoping the link is not dead when people click it 😅🙏
No, I'm just used to, as a woman, buttering most comments up (irl and online) in unnatural ways to not be seen as a bitch or low-intelligence or a clueless outsider. Right now I'm tired so maybe I over-corrected here, but living life in that way does cause anxiety, so that's also a genuine anxious tone you're catching. I read the other comments and they are getting upvotes when they clarify that they don't really agree with the post or like it. I think I agree with and like the post more than the other commentors and have been considering writing similar. It sucks that there is pretty much always someone ready to thumbs you down now matter how you word things, and it feels reasonable to spare a few words in the cases where it is most likely. (and this comment has no anxious tone because I see that is frowned upon here even though I'm now actually more anxious about this comment than the first one)
I think that might not even be necessary for some time tbh (see this comment)
supporting people who can unify humanity in the face of deep social and political divisions.
Ooh, that sounds suspiciously like:
I imagine someone who goes out of their way to mention "unification in face of social and political divisions" would be bullish on all these causes even if they were keeping it short and sweet for the journalists or haven't heard of these causes yet. EA ideas really aren't weird so let's just get him some donation opportunities :)[edit: and to clarify, even if these aren't your top cause areas, this saves Open Phil's dollars for the ones you might care about more. Then a year later we can get Bezos to look at other things as needed. Prob better to not try to make too big of asks at first, given the SBF scandal]
I think your latter points are better supported than your first point and I hope people keep reading long enough to get there. Additionally, I am upvoting this post because I agree with the lessons you are trying to share regardless of whether we should apply the lessons to the community's reaction to SBF specifically (I think we probably should, but like, probably not do a 180 degree pivot to be all fluffy rainbows about it and act like it was okay). Anyway, I'm just happy to see someone talking about loyalty, mistakes, other worlds, compassion, and stuff. These are important issues. And even if they were not that important, and should be just a small weighting of how we should decide how to react to SBF, they still should be factored in yet so far no one has brought them up. And yeah it sucks that me saying I upvoted this post means I might get downvoted. Hold your trigger fingers plz :(
I think your latter points are better supported than your first point and I hope people keep reading long enough to get there. Additionally, I am upvoting this post because I agree with the lessons you are trying to share regardless of whether they fit SBF specifically (I think they probably do, but I'm actually too tired to say right now and am just happy to see someone talking about loyalty and stuff)
Agree. I'd also add that this is a natural effect of the focus EA has put on outreach in universities and to young people. Not to say that the young people are the problem--they aren't, and we are happy to have them. But in prioritizing that, we did deprioritize outreach to mid and late-stage professionals. CEA and grantmakers only had so much bandwidth, and we only had so many people suited to CB/recruiting/outreach-style roles. We have had glaring gaps for a while in ability to manage people, scale programs, manage and direct projects and orgs, and perform due diligence checks on and advising for EA organisations. In other words, we lack expertise. I'd say 80K has been somewhat aware of this gap and touched on it lightly, and the community itself has dialled in on the problem by discussing EA recruiters. Yet CEA, funders, and others working on movement-building seem to repeatedly conflate community building with getting more young people to change careers, revealing their priorities, IMO, by what they actually work on.
Open Phil has done this as well. Looking at their Effective Altruism Community Growth focus area , 5 out of the 6 suggestions are focused on young people. The sixth is translating EA materials, so all options to directly work with promising people are focused on young people. Admittedly there is a form to submit other ideas, but given what looks like a ~5/5.5 base rate of thinking youth are worth mentioning where they could have mentioned something else, I'm not hopeful they care about non-youth interventions. When I look at that page, I cant help but think, "So, are we building a sustainable movement and network of professionals, or are we essentially running disjointed Thiel fellowships?" Things I'd like to see to increase expertise and experience in EA (in addition to new roles, interventions, and EA orgs focused on improving governance in EA):I hope it's not moot to discuss funder priorities now: I'd like to see funders and grantmakers overtly acknowledge that we need expertise from professionals outside the EA movement. The expertise bottleneck is the other side of the coin to the operations bottleneck, and it never got addressed. I'd also like to see blunt transparency of their reasons to have not prioritized or called for people to work on building experienced professional leadership and leadership assistance in EA orgs. If reasoning is made overt, perhaps we can workshop it, eg, if they think EAs are bad at talking to late-stage professionals, we hire someone who is good, or we ask a couple promising comms EAs to go through some class on recruiting executives.I'd also like to see EA individuals and orgs themselves take on this mantle of increasing expertise in EA. It feels like EA individuals have been saying this for a while but very few have been trying to solve the problem. Charity Entrepreneurship could even add charities with related missions to their incubation program. It can't be that different from Animal Advocacy Careers which they incubated already.I'd also like to see more nuanced terms than "community building" or "movement building" to better clarify what is being prioritized under the hood. Governance-building, professional network-building, and direct-worker building all have different focuses (and I could name so many more). I think the vagueness of the CB term could be responsible for a lot of our gaps, and also responsible for the lack of promising outcomes CB grantees might have seemed to yield, from the point of view of funders and grantmakers.
Experienced what 3 times in a year? Being asked out multiple times by the same person? Not having your no respected? Asked to join a polycule? I don't get what the grievances are tbh