I'm a junior at The University of Chicago, majoring in Public Policy. Highly uncertain about how to integrate EA with my career path but trying hard, hopefully through some intersection of policy + narrative change + movement-building.
Thanks! I'll take a break from thinking about the theory - ironically, I am fairly confident I don't want to go into academia.
Again, appreciate your thoughts on this. Hope I'll hear from you again if I post another Shortform about my thesis!
Hmm! Yes, that's interesting - and aligns with the fact that many different policy influencers weighed in, ranging from former to current policymakers. Thank you very much for this!
I think something I'm worried about is how I can conceptualize [inside experts] vs. [outside experts] ... It seems like a potentially arbitrary divide and/or a very complex undertaking given the lack of transparency into the policy process (i.e. who actually wields influence and access to Biden and Katherine Tai, on this specific issue?).
It also complicates the investigation by adding in the element of access as a factor, rather than purely thinking about narrative strategies - and I very much want to focus on narratives. On one hand, I think that could be interesting - e.g. looking at narrative strategies across levels of access. On the other, I'm uncertain that looking at narrative strategies would add much compared to just analyzing the stances of actors within the sphere of influence.
What do you think of this alternate RQ: "How did pro/anti-waiver coalitions use evidence in their narratives?"
Moves away from the focus on experts but still gets to the scientific/epistemic component.
(I'm also wondering whether I am being overly concerned with theoretically justifying things!)
*edit 3: After reading more on Epistemic Communities, I think I'm back where I started.*edit 4: I am questioning, now, whether I need a framework of how experts influence policymaking at all ... Maybe I should conceptualize my actors more broadly but narrow the topic to, say, the use of evidence in narratives?
I really appreciate your response, Ian! I think it makes sense that the more convoluted status of the first debate would make it a more valuable question to investigate.
My hesitation was not worded accessibly or clearly - it was too grounded in the specific frameworks I'm struggling to apply - so let me reword: it doesn't seem accurate to claim that there was one expert consensus (i.e. primarily pro-/anti-waiver). Given that, I am not sure a) how to break down the category of 'expert' - although you provide one suggestion, which is helpful - and b) how strongly I can justify focusing on experts, given that there isn't a clear divide between "what experts think" and "what non-experts think."
My main concern with investigating the debate around the TRIPS waiver is that there doesn't seem to be a clear expert consensus. I'm not even sure there's a clear EA-aligned consensus, although the few EAs I saw speak on this (e.g. Rob Wiblin) seemed to favor donating over waiving IP (which seems like a common argument from Europe). Given that, I question
I'm (still!!!) thinking about my BA thesis research question and I think my main uncertainty/decision point is what specific policy debate to investigate. I've narrowed it down to two so far - hopefully I don't expand - and really welcome thoughts.
Context: I am examining the relationship between narratives deployed by experts on Twitter and the Biden Administration's policymaking process re: COVID-19 vaccine diplomacy. Specifically, I want to examine a debate on an issue wherein EA-aligned experts have generally coalesced around one stance.
The two debates below, including general thoughts
*edited for clarity - was in a rush when I posted!
I love Hamilton! I wrote my IB Extended Essay on it!
I also really love and relate to Non-Stop but in the obsessive, perfectionist way. I like + appreciate your view on it, which seems quite different in that it is more focused on how Hamilton's brain works rather than on how hard he works.
Oh, I didn't know that! Appreciate the clarification of how the Forum works.
Update: This article seems to be pretty relevant to the above question.
Unfortunately, I'm starting to think my interest is even more qualitative than the above. So I'm not sure how much I'll be contributing to that research question.
Yes, I think Lizka might have mentioned him too. Good suggestion, thank you!
Glad it was interesting! I did hope that others might be motivated to take up a scout habit if they read this, so I'm happy to hear that you might be one step closer to that. : )
Also, thank you for commenting because I am now realising I didn't include the article that this post is on...
I think this might be appearing on the front page despite me unchecking the 'Frontpage' box - which seems like a recurring issue for me.
I am sorry if this is on the front page; I don't think it should be and I intended for this to live on my personal blog...