rumtin

CSER research affiliate and ANU Visiting Fellow, focused on the policy of existential risk. Currently, leading a project on helping the capability of the existential and global catastrophic risk field to engage and influence policy, as well as policy research on how governments can better manage the risks.

Topic Contributions

Comments

Identifying the most pressing global problems for an Australian policy context

Thanks Matt! Yes, would be very keen to see the paper.

We had definitely not factored in enough the resilience side of Australia's role on nuclear issues into our scoring. We'll be sure to include it as part of the more detailed scan of each of these policy issues. Your paper will be a really useful guide for that work.

Identifying the most pressing global problems for an Australian policy context

Thanks Eirik! I'd really like to see it done for other countries too.  

Related to your point, we will also be looking at what niche of an issue could Australia play a global role on. For example, perhaps we are a 'low' on climate change at large, but a 'high' on a specific part of climate change. This might change the calculus on what policy effort is required. For policy efforts in smaller countries, this approach might help identify opportunities to have global impact.

Identifying the most pressing global problems for an Australian policy context

This is a great point, Jack. I agree, I think we should change it to a 3. In fact, I wrote an op-ed last month arguing that Australia could even lead globally on nuclear risk. So you would have thought we should have rated it as a 3 to begin with!

Our instinct when putting nuclear risk (and other issues) at a 2 was not to over-egg Australia's role. Australia punches above its weight on many issues, but then seems also over-interpret its relative importance.  We were probably too wary of falling into that trap. But on nuclear risk, we do have some comparative advantages that would put us a bit higher on our rating scale.

Identifying the most pressing global problems for an Australian policy context

Hi Jack, Thanks for the comment! We decided to list it alphabetically in the post. Although some shortlisted items rated higher overall, we felt that the post shouldn't make too hard of a distinction - mostly because it's a relatively simple rating system, so we didn't want to give the impression that we are definitively rating some as higher than others.  I'll edit the post just to make that  clear.

Release of Existential Risk Research database

Hi Alexey - it's strange you can't see them, because all of those are already in the database. Searching directly for them is the easiest way as the way the author names are listed is a bit inconsistent (e.g. sometimes it's Alexey Turchin and other times Turchin A.)

Release of Existential Risk Research database

Thanks Matt! I hadn't realised that. Yes, I pulled straight from Terra for many of the publications, so the author order will appear the same. To be honest, not a priority for me to rectify at this stage. With Terra being updated, probably not worth spending too much time cleaning this up (e.g. I've also noticed  sometimes names or titles appear in all caps, or inconsistent use of first name vs initials). At this stage, I'm thinking minor updates and changes, such as adding a coloumn for specific risk (in addition to the risk category), expanding to other years, and expanding to other x-risk related organisations.

Release of Existential Risk Research database

Hi David. My sense is that the database is currently too simple to be used for your purposes. I have to give it some more thought about what can be added to help researchers differentiate between the publications. Risk category and policy relevance were the two most immediately relevant for my purposes, but I'm sure there are others worth including.

The Academic Paper filter does include working papers - maybe something I should delineate going forward. Many of the Reports are from academic institutions, but they're policy reports or technical reports as opposed to for an academic journal. 

From memory, few publications were highly quantitative or mathematical. If I were to look to add a coloumn based on this, what would be the best criteria. Theoretical vs empirical?

Release of Existential Risk Research database

Creating more work for me Peter!  ;) No, it's a great idea - I definitely want to promote updates to both the research database and policy idea database. If can share the materials you have, I would appreciate it!

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