[Link] "A Psychedelic Renaissance" (Chronicle of Philanthropy)

post by Milan_Griffes · 2019-05-06T17:57:41.913Z · score: 24 (6 votes) · EA · GW · 3 comments

Marc Gunther (a journalist who writes about EA sometimes: 1, 2, 3) has a new piece in the Chronicle of Philanthropy (a) about the recent wave of psychedelic research (supported mainly by private philanthropists).

Excerpt mentioning Good Ventures:

Others supporting the research include the foundation of Facebook co-founder Dustin Moskovitz and his wife, Cari Tuna; the foundation of Nick Pritzker, a venture capitalist and the former president of the Hyatt hotel chain, and his wife, Susan; George Sarlo, a Holocaust survivor and founder of an investment firm; the entrepreneur Elon Musk; Groupon co-founder Andrew Mason; and an anonymous Bitcoin millionaire known only as Pine, who says his philanthropy was inspired by a drug trip.

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comment by Milan_Griffes · 2019-05-06T18:02:33.422Z · score: 4 (2 votes) · EA · GW

More on Pine's decision to donate their bitcoin earnings here (a).

Given its time & capacity constraints, I think the Pineapple Fund did a really good job with capital allocation.

comment by Henry_Stanley · 2019-05-07T06:51:52.607Z · score: 2 (1 votes) · EA · GW

I've seen a few folks talk about psychedelics research as a potential "cause X"; given the decades of work already done and the many millions of dollars spent on research, is it likely to be a neglected cause area?

(Really enjoyed the article though. Also, Tim Ferriss has an interesting discussion on psychedelics with Peter Atilla in this podcast episode)

comment by Milan_Griffes · 2019-05-07T07:28:34.593Z · score: 5 (3 votes) · EA · GW
given the decades of work already done and the many millions of dollars spent on research, is it likely to be a neglected cause area?

It's neglected. As discussed in the linked article, scientific research is really expensive & the current psychedelic research is only happening because some private donors are funding it.

Governments are a major driver of scientific funding (NIH intends to grant $39.1 billion in 2019), and governments aren't touching psychedelic research at all.

From my present vantage, It seems clear that psychedelic research is funding constrained, such that more money would convert into more research.

Also there's the related issue of ending the explicitly racist war on drugs, which is also an expensive project that's funding constrained.