Topic Contributions


Updated Climate Change Problem Profile

Many props for doing this. This is exactly the sort of careful critique I'd like to see more people generating.

Did you approach 80,000 Hours about your post before putting it up? If you didn't, it seems quite plausible that they'd have integrated some of these changes after speaking with you directly. The benefits of approaching them first are that it appears less adversarial and (less certain) they are more likely to notice. However, I think there are also arguments for publishing publicly and independently, too.

What type of Master's is best for AI policy work?

Milan and I spoke about this, so I'm just commenting to let other readers know that I'm happy to be a resource on this, specifically if you're looking at US programs. For context, I'm a Master's student in Georgetown's Security Studies Program, in their Technology and Security concentration, but have considered and think well of other programs, too.

How to have cost-effective fun

For people looking to get into CBT, Spencer Greenberg and co. are developing an app to walk people through it:

Comparative advantage in the talent market

We can do the same for trading talent. People thinking about working in another cause area can ask around whether there’s someone considering switching to a cause area preferred by them. However, trading places in this scenario brings major practical challenges, so it is likely not viable in most cases.

One difficulty with this is that it's hard to go back on the trade if the other person decides to stop cooperating. If you're doing a moral trade of say, being vegetarian in order to get someone to donate more to a poverty charity, you can just stop being vegetarian if the person stops donating. (You should want to do this so that the trades actually maintain validity as trades, rather than means of hijacking people into doing things that fulfill the other person's values.) However, if Allison focuses on biorisk to get Bettina to do animal welfare work, either one is likely to end up with only weakly fungible career capital and therefore be unable to pivot back to their own priorities if the other pulls out. This is particularly bad if fungibility is asymmetrical -- say, if one person cultivated operations experience that can be used many places, while the other built up deep domain knowledge in an area they don't prioritize. It therefore seems important that people considering doing this kind of thing aim not only for having tradable priorities but also similar costs to withdrawing from the trade.

Effective Altruism Grants project update

Right, neither do I. My 25-hour estimate was how long it would take you to make one grant of ~£500,000, not a bunch of grants adding up to that amount. I assumed that if Open Phil had been distributing these funds it would have done so by giving greater amounts to far fewer recipients.

Effective Altruism Grants project update

For what it's worth, Owen thinks I should use at least double $75/hour, given the experience of the staff working on the project and the nature of the work.

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