Sebastian Schwiecker

Founder & CEO @ Effektiv Spenden
Working (15+ years of experience)
783Berlin, DeutschlandJoined Mar 2019


CEO & Founder of


I'm obviously biased, but wholeheartedly agree with you that EA should invest even more in effective giving (because of the impact the donations will have and also to get more people interested in EA). In the last couple of weeks I have started to become more optimistic that this will happen though (e.g. Open Phil seems to consider supporting this space directly).

With regards to the "pick a fight" strategy you might want to check out some of the very early GiveWell blog posts (2007 - 2009). They definitely didn't shy away from a fight (just ask Charity Navigator) and I actually think that this was a smart strategy at the time and might still be under some circumstances. 

Thanks for the feedback. I'm kind of with you, but having a nice office in a really central location would increase the price at least 3x (+ significant setup costs). In addition some of the regulars are living pretty close so it wouldn't be an improvement for everybody. Nevertheless, if someone would be willing to commit €500,000+ I'm very happy to talk and/or help.

I agree with you that we should stop saying “funding overhang”. I’m also not advocating for Sam or Dustin to sell their stocks and put their money into supposedly safer assets.

What should be done in my opinion is to work harder on diversifying and increasing the amount of money available to EA causes and make sure that GiveWell et al. have to decrease “the bar” faster and more consistently (makes stuff more predictable and therefore probably more effective). One way (out of many) to do so that seems pretty obvious to me would be to put even more money into the effective giving landscape to convince millions of people in the world to give more effectively (again, I’m biased). A decent chunk of that would come from income and not equities. Still correlates with the global markets but much less so.

To a certain extent effective giving organizations are already receiving considerably more money than a couple of years ago but as long as several have a counterfactual multiplier (donations raised / cost of raising donations) of > 10 I think we should be much more aggressive since it kind of pays for itself many times over (and also to hedge against a possible prolonged bear market).

I’m obviously biased but I do see this as another clear sign that instead of worrying about a perceived funding overhang EA should invest heavily in increasing and diversifying its fundraising capabilities.

Thank Konstantin for you pushing the idea (translate/create great German EA content).

In case other people reading this are confused: Konstantin and I are in close contact and are convinced that more than one person should work on this for the foreseeable future (especially if you also want to make sure that this content can be found easily via SEO etc.).

Thanks for your feedback. Just created an anonymous feedback form for people who have spent time at TEAMWORK to get more critical input (will put it on our website, in our handbook etc. as well).

I think some of your concerns could be addressed with more funding. Others probably only if a bigger player like CEA goes all in and opens up its own EA-Coworking/Event-Space in Berlin. As far as I know no such plans exist, but if I’m wrong please let me know. Happy to completely focus on our core business.

Compared to the situation in Berlin before we opened up TEAMWORK I still have a very hard time not seeing our Space as a huge improvement.

We didn't but heard from other philanthropic advisors (mostly from outside the EA community) that it can sometimes be very challenging to nudge major donors to give effectively and be open minded (actually some of us experienced that first hand in former jobs).

Thanks a lot for this. Hope GiveWell will speed up there process (will contact them directly as well).

Edit: Removed broken link.

Definitely the case in Germany. Top 3 Google results for "longtermism" are all very negative posts. 2 of them by some of Germany biggest news magazines (ZEIT and Spiegel). As far as I know there is no positive content on Longtermism in German.

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