What are some lists of open questions in effective altruism?

post by aarongertler · 2019-02-05T02:23:03.345Z · score: 23 (13 votes) · EA · GW · No comments

This is a question post.


    14 saulius
    13 Pablo_Stafforini
    2 aarongertler
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One very good way to inspire research is to create a list of open questions. I'm aware of a few resources like this:

Are there other sets of EA-related open questions that I've left out of this list, and that aren't on Richard's list?

Specifically, I'm looking for questions that could be solved through research or experimentation, rather than "projects" that require competitive execution ("could someone create an Amazon for charitable donations?" doesn't count, but "what factors lead to someone repeatedly using a donation website?" could).


answer by saulius · 2019-02-05T12:05:38.241Z · score: 14 (8 votes) · EA · GW

Effectivethesis.com contains many possible topics

There’s also Jacy Reese’s 2018 list of half-baked volunteer research ideas [EA · GW]

There are some research ideas at the end of EA Summit’s list

Global Priorities Institute's research agenda a has very many possible research projects listed.

80,000 hours as a list of potentially promising paths that they haven't written reviews on yet. I vaguely remember them mentioning somewhere that it could be valuable for people to write reviews about careers they are seriously considering. I guess 80,000 hours framework could be used for that.

answer by Pablo_Stafforini · 2019-02-05T11:27:04.765Z · score: 13 (6 votes) · EA · GW

This post compiles lists of important questions and problems.

comment by rohinmshah · 2019-02-06T20:20:16.172Z · score: 3 (3 votes) · EA · GW

I was going to post a few lists that hadn't already been posted, but this one had all of them already :)

comment by Habryka · 2019-02-06T20:46:05.980Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · EA · GW

Interesting. I would be excited about someone collating all of these into one large post. I find that the trivial inconvenience of clicking through all of them is indeed a pretty significant barrier to me reading them.

comment by aarongertler · 2019-02-07T00:18:08.782Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · EA · GW

One of CEA's future goals for the Forum is to have an "Open Questions" page which is the most comprehensive source for such questions. Having interactivity around question posts (e.g. commenters adding papers that contribute to a question, with summaries of what progress was made) seems potentially really good.

I can't promise a particular timeline for this, and I'm not sure what form it will take, but I do think the Forum is a good place for questions to exist. If anyone sees this and has thoughts/questions, I'd be very happy to talk to them about what might make an "Open Questions" list especially good/helpful.

comment by BryonyMC · 2019-02-08T03:43:32.738Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · EA · GW

This would actually be really helpful for people new in EA to learn more and catch up on existing discussions and find more thoughtful ways to join the conversation. It sounds a bit like Kialo a platform for rational debate (ex: "ethics of eating animals: is eating meat wrong?"). Would be awesome to see something along the lines of their format for tracking all points around a discussion (but focused only on topics in EA). 

answer by aarongertler · 2019-03-11T23:32:52.623Z · score: 2 (1 votes) · EA · GW

I'll add Sentience Institute's list of common disagreements in animal welfare, which Peter Hurford linked to in another thread. Thanks, Peter!

Other links added later:

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