Nandini Shiralkar

Founder of the Cambridge Existential Risks Initiative (

Engineering undergraduate at Trinity College, University of Cambridge.


An easy win for hard decisions.

If you are planning to work on a project with multiple people (this could be something like running an intro fellowship, or starting a x-risk initiative at your university), you should probably spend at least 5% of your time on finding your top level goal and thinking about any risks associated with your project, i.e., writing a meta strategy document. I did this when I founded CERI, and it's been one of the most useful documents which we still use for strategy meetings etc. 

Announce summer EA internships farther in advance

This is actually something we considered at CERI, especially because of the prestigious finance internships which many people apply to in autumn. Unfortunately, the timelines did not work out for this year as we needed more time to:

  1. Build up the core SRF team (CERI as a whole went from a team of 6 to a team of 12) and foster a team culture.
  2. Reflect on last summer's programme and think about ways to improve it (we ended up developing a completely different model for the SRF).
  3. Think hard about our theories of change for the various cause areas and compile project lists.
  4. Put together an application form which will be both easy to evaluate well and beneficial for the applicants (5+ applicants thus far have indicated that the application itself was very inspirational/educational for them).

We may consider multiple rounds of recruitment for next year's SRF, depending on our impact evaluation of this summer and other factors.