Thanks very much for this write-up, I learned a lot from it!
I’m a bit confused by your position on the counterfactual impact of Pugwash on political leaders’ views.
On the one hand:
On the other hand:
More generally, it might be helpful to use probability ranges to clarify what you mean by phrases like ‘a good case that’ and ‘very large effects’, and to use quantitative modelling to try to reach a more precise estimate of Pugwash’s counterfactual impact.
Thanks for the great analysis! Your first post said "My current best guess is that, between now and 2100, we face a ~35% chance of a serious, direct conflict between Great Powers." This seems to be the estimate that is used in your guesstimate model for "probability of a major great power war breaking out before 2100". But in this post you say your best guess for the chance of at least one great power war breaking out this century is 45%. Not sure why there is this discrepancy, am I missing something?
"I have regularly seen proposals in the community to stop and regulate AI development" - Are there any public ones you can signpost to or are these all private proposals?
A couple have already mentioned it but I'll repeat the request for nutrition advice. In particular: As a vegan, what supplements (aside from B12) should I be taking? Are there any that may be harmful? Are there any evidence-backed dietary interventions that improve cognitive performance?
Re your second point, a counter would be that the implementation of recommendations arising from ERS will often have impacts on the population around at the time of implementation, and the larger those impacts are the less possible specialization seems. E.g. if total utilitarians/longtermists were considering seriously pursuing the implementation of global governance/ubiquitous surveillance, this might risk such a significant loss of value to non-utilitarian non-longtermists that it's not clear total utilitarians/longtermists should be left to dominate the debate.
Thank you for the detailed response, very helpful!
Thanks for the thorough reply, and I've now read the second post which suggested more potential for direct impact than I had initially thought. On (2), I agree value drift wasn't a great term for what I had in mind. Thanks for bringing out the nuance there
Thanks for this write-up! A few questions, some of which you may already be planning to address in future posts:
Challenge prize(s) to incentivise the development of innovative solutions in priority areas. These could be prizes for goals already suggested by people in this thread (e.g. producing resilient food sources, drastic changes to diagnostic testing, meat alternatives underinvested in by the market) or others. Quotes from a Nesta report on challenge prizes (caveat that I haven't spent any time looking up opposing evidence/perspectives):
By guiding and incentivising the smartest minds, prizes create more diverse solutions. Because prizes only pay out when a problem has been solved, you can support long shots, radical ideas and unusual suspects while minimising risk...
The high profile of a prize can raise public awareness and shape the future development of markets and technologies. Prizes can help identify best practice, shift regulation and drive policy change...For the Ansari XPRIZE, 26 teams spent $100 million chasing the $10 million prize, jump starting the commercial space industry.
The high profile of a prize can raise public awareness and shape the future development of markets and technologies. Prizes can help identify best practice, shift regulation and drive policy change...
For the Ansari XPRIZE, 26 teams spent $100 million chasing the $10 million prize, jump starting the commercial space industry.
See also Musk's $100m prize for carbon capture tech
Thanks for this! I'd love to hear your views on the potential for impact in this career path. For example: (1) What are some positive examples of impact that you/colleagues have been able to have on cause areas that EAs typically care about such as reducing existential risk? How rare is this kind of impact? (2) To what extent are staff in overseas embassies influencing the policy of the UK government vs just communicating it?(3) How much has the foreign office's chance of making a difference on important global issues been diminished by Brexit? No worries if you don't feel comfortable answering all/any of these questions on here.