Woman // Christian // Canadian // Londoner // Married // Donates to Global Development // Works on Energy Policy
Reducing procrastination on altruistic projects:
I have often struggled to get started on projects that are particularly important to me so I thought I'd jot down a couple ways I handle procrastination.
Thanks for taking the time to post this result four years later!
Hey, I'm actually most interested in what kind of data you're planning to collect from the control group - what are your plans there?
I think perhaps we agree then - if after significant research, you realize you can't beat an EA Fund, that seems like a reasonable fallback, but that should not be plan A.
Re: increasing grantmakers, I meant increasing the number of grantmakers who have spent significant time thinking about where to donate significant capital - obviously having hundreds of people donating $1k each would have more diversity but in practice I think most $1k donors defer their decision-making to someone else, like an EA Fund or GiveWell.
I've been impressed recently with the work of the Simon Institute for Long-Term Governance, which might match the brief for new, experimental long-termist organizations.
I disagree. One of the original rationales for the lottery if I recall correctly was to increase the diversity* of funding sources and increase the number of grantmakers. I think if the LTFF is particularly funding constrained, there's a good chance the Open Philanthropy Project or a similar organisation will donate to them. I value increased diversity and number of grantmakers enough that I think it's worth trying to beat LTFF's grantmaking even if you might fail.
*By diversity, I don't mean gender or ethnicity, I just mean having more than one grantmaker doing the same thing, ideally with different knowledge, experience and connections.
I do like the idea of creating a community and a bit of an accountability mechanism around career impact. I do have a critique of your suggestion: there's a big difference between a "donate 10%" pledge and a "maximize the impact of my career" pledge.
You have more than one goal, and that's fine . Truly maximizing the impact of your career is more like donating 90% of your income than 10% - it would mean giving up all the other goals you have in order to focus on one thing. I don't see many examples of that even in EA and I wouldn't encourage it.
In this situation, the fact that we probably wouldn't want to encourage literally maximizing impact from careers would unfortunately make a pledge even more difficult to operationalize!
I'm not going to downvote it as that would give you negative karma and hide this comment!
I could imagine that happening in some situations where after a lot of careful thought you decide to defer to another grantmaker, but if you know in advance that you'd like to give your money to a grantmaker, shouldn't you just do that?
I'm becoming concerned that the title "EA-aligned organisation" is doing more harm than good. Obviously it's pointing at something real and you can expect your colleagues to be familiar with certain concepts, but there's no barrier to calling yourself an EA-aligned organisation, and in my view some are low or even negative impact. The fact that people can say "I do ops at an EA org" and be warmly greeted as high status even if they could do much more good outside EA rubs me the wrong way. If people talked about working at a "high-impact organisation" instead, that would push community incentives in a good way I think.