EA Updates for December 2019 2020-01-03T15:23:19.648Z · score: 22 (9 votes)
Community vs Network 2019-12-12T14:04:33.429Z · score: 77 (38 votes)
EA Updates for November 2019 2019-11-29T13:15:14.780Z · score: 35 (17 votes)
EA Updates for October 2019 2019-11-01T11:47:19.209Z · score: 47 (23 votes)
Latest EA Updates for September 2019 2019-09-28T12:12:25.117Z · score: 60 (26 votes)
Latest EA Updates for August 2019 2019-08-30T11:35:33.472Z · score: 30 (18 votes)
Effective Altruism London Strategy 2019 2019-08-22T11:16:09.423Z · score: 29 (17 votes)
The EA Forum is a News Feed 2019-07-28T22:27:48.912Z · score: 69 (36 votes)
Latest EA Updates for July 2019 2019-07-26T13:58:24.807Z · score: 40 (21 votes)
Latest EA Updates for June 2019 2019-07-01T10:07:50.179Z · score: 37 (16 votes)
Latest EA Updates for May 2019 2019-05-31T16:36:21.148Z · score: 20 (9 votes)
Effective Altruism London Landscape in 2019 2019-05-17T23:10:58.464Z · score: 48 (25 votes)
Latest EA Updates for April 2019 2019-05-01T15:08:00.695Z · score: 54 (29 votes)
Latest EA Updates for March 2019 2019-03-29T15:47:14.835Z · score: 28 (16 votes)
EA London Community Building Lessons Learnt - 2018 2019-03-20T11:38:00.155Z · score: 47 (25 votes)
Latest Research and Updates for February 2019 2019-02-28T15:07:31.360Z · score: 44 (26 votes)
Hit Based Giving for Global Development 2019-02-06T18:19:19.865Z · score: 23 (12 votes)
Latest Research and Updates for January 2019 2019-01-31T13:06:46.998Z · score: 30 (15 votes)
Latest Research and Updates for December 2019-01-04T12:38:10.263Z · score: 36 (19 votes)
Survey of 2018 EA Survey 2018-12-20T17:29:02.631Z · score: 26 (9 votes)
Notes on “The Art of Gathering” 2018-12-06T15:48:41.558Z · score: 33 (19 votes)
Latest Research and Updates for November 2018-11-30T15:10:22.010Z · score: 17 (10 votes)
Latest Research and Updates for October 2018-11-03T10:56:06.930Z · score: 14 (13 votes)
A Third Take on Trump 2017-03-31T18:21:49.204Z · score: 6 (6 votes)
EA London Strategy Quarterly 2015-09-05T21:48:27.856Z · score: 1 (1 votes)


Comment by davidnash on Growth and the case against randomista development · 2020-01-17T17:06:00.837Z · score: 8 (5 votes) · EA · GW

I think even if it isn't inflammatory, a different title might make the intended audience less defensive and more likely to change their minds as it isn't about their identity, and more about how much weight to give RCTs versus other evaluation methods.

Comment by davidnash on Attempts to introduce young high-wealth philanthropists to EA? · 2020-01-15T10:39:59.533Z · score: 6 (4 votes) · EA · GW

There is Generation Pledge, with the below description.

"Generation Pledge exists to unlock billions of dollars that can be deployed to fund the most effective solutions to the world’s greatest challenges.

We work with a community of heirs who are committed to doing good with the resources they have available. We offer opportunities to learn, connect, collaborate and take action to create large-scale positive impact."

Comment by davidnash on EA Updates for December 2019 · 2020-01-07T11:22:36.286Z · score: 3 (2 votes) · EA · GW

I have quite a few newsletter subscriptions, with some that are tangentially related to EA.

I sometimes search twitter for mentions of effective altruism.

A few things come via LinkedIn connections on the newsfeed.

Comment by davidnash on Community vs Network · 2019-12-18T10:38:48.975Z · score: 2 (1 votes) · EA · GW

I think the community is composed of people who either attend multiple EA events each year or contribute to online discussion, and some proportion of people who work at an EA related organisation, so maybe between 500-2000 people.

There are quite a few people who might attend an EAG or read content but don't get involved and wouldn't consider themselves part of the community. I might be biased as part of my work at EA London has included having lots of conversations with people who often have a great understanding of EA but have never been to an event.

Comment by davidnash on Community vs Network · 2019-12-18T10:26:47.326Z · score: 5 (3 votes) · EA · GW

The 1-3X and 10/90 percent are loosely held assumptions. I think it may be more accurate to assume there are power law distributions for people who would consider themselves in the community and also for those who are in the wider network. If both groups have a similar distribution, than the network probably has an order of magnitude more people who have 100x-1000x impact. Some examples include junior members of the civil service being quite involved in EA, but there are also senior civil servants and lots of junior civil servants who are interested in EA but don't attend meetups.

I'm not sure that it is a core EA org belief that the difference is down to whether someone is heavily engaged in the community or not. Lots of examples they use of people who have had a much larger impact come from before EA was a movement.

Comment by davidnash on Community vs Network · 2019-12-16T19:01:06.011Z · score: 4 (3 votes) · EA · GW
the argument does not hold if those groups are only for people who are very familiar with EA thinking

I think when creating most groups/sub-communities it's important that there is a filter to make sure people have an understanding of EA, otherwise it can become an average group for that cause area rather than a space for people who have an interest in EA and that specific cause, and are looking for EA related conversations.

But the likelihood that I would have changed my cause area because other causes are more important to work on would have been smaller. This could be because it is less likely to come across good arguments for other causes as not that many people around me have an incentive to point me towards those resources.

I think most people who have an interest in EA also hold uncertainty about their moral values, the tractability of various interventions and which causes are most important. It can be easy sometimes to pigeonhole people with particular causes depending on where they work or donate but I don't meet many people who only care about one cause, and the EA survey had similar results.

If people are able to come across well reasoned arguments for interventions within a cause area they care about, I think it's more likely that they'll stick around. As most of the core EA material (newsletters, forum, FB) has reference to multiple causes, it will be hard to avoid these ideas. Especially if they are also in groups for their career/interests/location.

I think the bigger risk is losing people who instantly bounce from EA when it doesn't even attempt to answer their questions rather than the risk of people not getting exposed to other ideas. If EA doesn't have cause groups then there's probably a higher chance of someone just going to another movement that does allow conversation in that area.

This quote from an 80,000 Hours interview with Kelsey Piper phrases it much better.

"Maybe pretty early on, it just became obvious that there wasn’t a lot of value in preaching to people on a topic that they weren’t necessarily there for, and that I had a lot of thoughts on the conversations people were already having. Then I think one thing you can do to share any reasoning system, but it works particularly well for effective altruism is just to apply it consistently, in a principled way, to problems that people care about. Then, they’ll see whether your tools look like useful tools. If they do, then they’ll be interested in learning more about that. I think my ideal effective altruist movement, and obviously this trade off against lots of other things and I don’t know that we can be doing more of it on the margin. My ideal effective altruist movement had insightful nuanced, productive, takes on lots and lots of other things so that people could be like, “Oh, I see how effective altruists have tools for answering questions. “I want the people who have tools for answering questions to teach me about those tools. I want to know what they think the most important questions are. I want to sort of learn about their approach."

Comment by davidnash on Community vs Network · 2019-12-16T18:24:51.994Z · score: 5 (3 votes) · EA · GW
the EA community tends to be especially capable

I'm not sure that an EA community member is 'especially capable' compared to a capable person who attends less events or is less engaged with online content. The wider network may have quite a few people who have absorbed 5+ years of online material to do with EA, but rarely interacted, and those people will have used the same advice to choose donations and careers as more engaged members.

I also think the network has higher variance, you may get people who are not doing much altruistically, but there will also be more people in business with 20+ year experience, leading academics in their field and people higher up in government who want to good with their careers.

Side point

Comparisons have been made before about the impact of an EA and, e.g., the average developed country person.

Whilst I'm aware that you move on from this point, I'm not sure it's useful to have as a comparison when the post is about people who are aware of EA and of having impact within their career rather than everyone in a developed country. It may be that it's also hard to parse your text without paragraphs and removing that first point would have helped.

Comment by davidnash on EA Updates for November 2019 · 2019-11-29T15:19:13.505Z · score: 2 (1 votes) · EA · GW

Thanks, updated.

Comment by davidnash on I'm Buck Shlegeris, I do research and outreach at MIRI, AMA · 2019-11-21T11:01:17.416Z · score: 9 (6 votes) · EA · GW

I think similar areas were covered in these two posts as well 80,000 Hours - how to read our advice and Thoughts on 80,000 Hours’ research that might help with job-search frustrations.

Comment by davidnash on EA Handbook 3.0: What content should I include? · 2019-11-16T12:04:48.530Z · score: 10 (6 votes) · EA · GW

There was a Facebook post on top 10 concepts for people to know in EA.

Here are some of the suggestions.

  • Cause neutrality
  • Scale, Neglectedness and Solvability framework
  • Maximising welfare
  • Moral patient-hood
  • Moral uncertainty
  • Moral trade
  • Longtermism
  • Hits-based giving
  • Worldview diversification
  • Earning-to-give
  • Comparative advantage
  • Epistemic principles
  • Crucial Considerations

I think some of the points in this 80,000 Hours article apply to EA in general

  • We’ve been wrong before, and we’ll be wrong again
  • Many of the questions we tackle are a matter of balance, and different people will benefit from considering opposing messages
  • Personal fit matters, so focus more on strategies than simple answers
  • There are disagreements within the community
  • Treat doing good as just one of many important goals in life

Also this one - Misconceptions of 80,000 Hours research (although maybe they wont be misconceptions if it is the first thing they read)

  • Roles outside explicitly EA organisations are most people’s best career options.
  • Sometimes these roles aren’t as visible to the community, including to 80,000 Hours, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t highly impactful.
  • Many especially impactful roles require specific skills. If none of these roles are currently a great fit for you, but one could be if you developed the right skills, it can be worth it to take substantial time to do so.
  • You should use 80,000 Hours to figure out what your best career is and how to get there, not what “the” best careers are.

I'd add in different ways of having impact and how they generally compare as people often ask about why EA doesn't do much in one of the following; career, donations, volunteering, influence/voting and personal consumption

Also some articles that I've shared quite regularly with people newer to EA.

Why choose a cause and how to strategically choose a cause

6 tips on choosing an effective charity

Where I am donating this year

Giving Cheerfully

Effective altruism as question

Comment by davidnash on Seeking Marketing & Sales + EA Project/Work Ideas · 2019-11-15T23:16:43.415Z · score: 7 (5 votes) · EA · GW

One idea is for them to coordinate the global community of people in marketing/sales who are interested in EA.

Providing a point of entry for other marketers to see where the best places may be for them to work, what skills to build and what networks to join so that they can have more positive impact.

This may include a newsletter every few months highlighting job opportunities and examples of marketing for good, an online group(FB/Slack/etc) for people to swap ideas and potentially get mentorship.

Comment by davidnash on Announcing plans for a German Effective Altruism Network focused on Community Building · 2019-11-15T13:34:02.552Z · score: 2 (1 votes) · EA · GW

I think that this is a good plan and it would be interesting to hear if there have been any updates in the last 4 months.

I agree with a lot of the other comments but one thing I haven't noticed is how to provide value to the wider network of people in Germany who have an interest in EA but may not want to go to events or become heavily engaged.

Comment by davidnash on List of EA-related email newsletters · 2019-10-10T13:28:40.037Z · score: 20 (7 votes) · EA · GW

I don't have a complete list, but here are quite a few of the organisations that I subscribe to for updates.

Long Term Future

Future of Life Institute

Future of Humanity Institute

Global Priorities Institute

Centre for the Study of Existential Risk

Global Catastrophic Risk Institute

Artificial Intelligence

Center for Security and Emerging Technology

Oxford Internet Institute


Leverhulme Centre for the Future of Intelligence

Google AI


Alan Turing Institute

Animal Welfare

Cellular Agriculture UK


Animal Charity Evaluators

Good Food Institute

Animal Advocacy Careers

Sentience Institute

The Humane League

Farm Animal Welfare Newsletter from OPP

Animal Ethics

Wild Animal Institute

But Can They Suffer

Global Development

The Life You Can Save

Devex International Development


Centre for Global Development



Global Innovation Fund

Wellcome Trust (also improving institutions)

International Initiative for Impact Evaluation


Innovations for Poverty Action

Fortify Health

Copenhagen Consensus Centre

Charity Science Health

Gates Foundation

Schistosomiasis Control Initiative

Overseas Development Institute

Development Media International

Against Malaria Foundation

Malaria Consortium

Evidence Action

Happier Lives Institute

Improving Institutions

Cambridge Centre for Science and Policy

Campbell Collaboration

Centre for Excellence in Development and Learning

Our World in Data

Centre for Open Science

To Be Decided

UCL Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose

Effective Altruism

Effective Altruism Newsletter (by CEA, EA Hub and Rethink Charity)

Future Perfect

Charity Entrepreneurship

80,000 Hours

80k Supporters Updates

Centre for Effective Altruism

Open Philanthropy Project

Rethink Priorities

EA Groups Newsletter


The Center for Effective Philanthropy

Founders Pledge

Non Profit Chronicles

General Interest

Clearer Thinking


Matt’s Thoughts In Between - Founder of Entrepeneur First

Comment by davidnash on Why did MyGiving need to be replaced? And why is the replacement so bad? · 2019-10-05T14:27:00.141Z · score: 16 (7 votes) · EA · GW

I thought it was so that it tied in with EA Funds, which is something that made me think CEA was paying much more attention to donations, making a unified system that also allowed people to donate from one platform and automatically record donations.

Although I agree that repeated donations not being an option is quite annoying.

Comment by davidnash on Chart showing effectiveness of schooling internvetions · 2019-10-03T07:55:19.257Z · score: 3 (2 votes) · EA · GW

I used these images for a slide show a few years ago, the original source being this report by CEA (page 6).

That might be old data though, this is the most up to date version on JPALs website.

Comment by davidnash on EA Handbook 3.0: What content should I include? · 2019-10-01T15:30:03.830Z · score: 12 (8 votes) · EA · GW

I don't think addressing these questions in a handbook that's meant to introduce EA would be that useful as most of them require much more in depth reading than a few paragraphs would allow.

It may make more sense to have an FAQ for these typical questions or to say that lots of areas within EA are still being discussed, and then list the questions.

Comment by davidnash on Summary of my academic paper “Effective Altruism and Systemic Change” · 2019-09-26T19:43:24.792Z · score: 13 (10 votes) · EA · GW

I think this is a really good comment and probably should be it's own post.

A minor point, I would say that giving to the Against Malaria Foundation may not on it's own be systemic change, but if enough people keep on giving to charities that are evaluated on their impact, it could change individual giving as a system, as charities respond to these new incentives.

Comment by davidnash on Optimizing Activities Fairs · 2019-09-18T15:49:36.234Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · EA · GW

A two stage strategy might be best, outreach for the first week, then core community the rest of the semester.

It may be that getting lots of email sign ups can be okay to then pass on 80,000 Hours material, the first few events and 1-1 sign up. I've heard from quite a few people that they first heard of EA at a university fair and kept on getting the 80,000 Hours emails and then got much more involved once they started working 3-5 years later.

After focusing on outreach for the first week, I agree it probably makes sense to focus on the core 5-30 people who are actually interested in EA rather than trying to put on events for the wider student audience that signed up to everything but wont really come to anything.

If there is a situation where someone is really interested but it's hectic, I would put a note by their name to remember to reach out to them individually rather than prioritising the 5 minute conversation.

Comment by davidnash on Effective Altruism London Strategy 2019 · 2019-09-17T09:58:38.866Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · EA · GW

1. Most of my time will be spent doing similar things to last year, although I've only been working full time for 9 months. I think innovation, at least for me, happens over time rather than as a one off process, with ideas being formed and then being tested to see what people like. One recent example is the community spotlight, which was an idea a few weeks ago and now has become a regular post.

In terms of taking EA to the next level, there isn't a plan to grow or hire more people but rather coordinate and support nascent organisations in London that can start doing other work and grow independently.

2. I will have a look

Comment by davidnash on Effective Altruism London Strategy 2019 · 2019-09-17T09:53:36.678Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · EA · GW

There is a Facebook group and a small page on the website.

Comment by davidnash on Effective Altruism London Strategy 2019 · 2019-09-17T09:51:23.952Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · EA · GW

It's not that I don't want people to upskill, it's that I think it's best done by people who have experience in that area, whether that is via a course or workshop.

In terms of getting people to meet in person, I agree that certain talks/workshops/themes can help attract different people, but the best outcomes from that aren't usually what people learn, but the connections they make, and designing a workshop just to drive attendance may not be the most efficient way of getting people to attend.

Comment by davidnash on Effective Altruism London Strategy 2019 · 2019-08-22T19:25:11.454Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · EA · GW

I agree with everything you said, I guess those three points aren't things that I think about often but might make sense to update the document to better reflect that.

Comment by davidnash on Evaluating Communal Violence from an Effective Altruist Perspective · 2019-08-13T19:56:51.745Z · score: 3 (2 votes) · EA · GW

I may have missed this but does the $10 billion spent on peace building programs in 2016 include spending by governments, or is that just foundations?

Comment by davidnash on 12 years of education as a missing cause priority · 2019-08-08T11:22:35.181Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · EA · GW

I'm not sure that's roughly true, EA priorities also have to be neglected, generally the most effective interventions are already taken by governments and large organisations.

Comment by davidnash on Why has poverty worldwide fallen so little in recent decades outside China? · 2019-08-07T23:46:58.518Z · score: 4 (5 votes) · EA · GW

I don't think that this article is a good representation of the debate over these issues and takes an approach where the author seems to have already made up their mind about possible solutions.

This post from Our World in Data probably gives the best overview of stagnation in global poverty

"A generation ago the majority of the world's poorest lived in economies that went on to grow very fast. What is different now is that a rising share of the world's poorest are living in economies which have not achieved economic growth in the recent past.

Half a billion are expected to remain in extreme poverty by 2030 if current trends of economic growth and levels of within-country inequality persist.
The decline of extreme poverty is expected to slow down.

Much of the progress will be driven by economic growth in Asia, and India in particular. The number of people in extreme poverty in Africa is expected to stagnate."

Comment by davidnash on 12 years of education as a missing cause priority · 2019-08-07T12:41:58.302Z · score: 16 (10 votes) · EA · GW

I think this article in Vox covers some of the main points.

"...improving the American education system, while important, is neither a neglected cause nor a tractable one. It is a system on which hundreds of billions of dollars are spent annually by diffuse governments whose policies are difficult and expensive to change, where matters of importance are intensely contested, and where interest groups tend to fight each other to a standstill.

And it’s a system where, even after investing millions if not billions in research, we still don’t have a lot of confidence as to which interventions are helpful and which are not. The views of key actors, notably the Gates Foundation, have tended to shift rapidly on those substantive questions.

If every issue in the world were as crowded and hard to make progress on as education in the US, then I’d understand why foundations like Gates and Broad keep chugging. But that’s not the case..."

Comment by davidnash on The EA Forum is a News Feed · 2019-07-29T18:26:39.273Z · score: 9 (7 votes) · EA · GW

I think tags might be helpful, but would probably be used by very few people and still miss out the most important reasons for having a different structure.

Another thing to think about is that the forum as it currently is might be favoured by people who use it, but may miss out on the counterfactual people who would use an actual forum if it existed or bounce upon impact with this forum.

Comment by davidnash on The EA Forum is a News Feed · 2019-07-29T15:56:01.927Z · score: 7 (4 votes) · EA · GW

Functionally it would be similar, but from a user point of view it would probably be quite a different experience.

From my own usage I have rarely used tags on blogs or news feeds but have often interacted with different sub-forums.

Comment by davidnash on Running Effective Altruism Groups: A Literature Review · 2019-07-22T10:54:59.113Z · score: 5 (3 votes) · EA · GW

I guess I have concerns with over valuing metrics that are easier to collect which might lead to optimising for the wrong activities.

There is the impact report from EA London for 2018.

Comment by davidnash on There are *a bajillion* jobs working on plant-based foods right now · 2019-07-20T12:20:56.969Z · score: 31 (12 votes) · EA · GW

Why not just use Glassdoor?

Comment by davidnash on Running Effective Altruism Groups: A Literature Review · 2019-07-18T15:59:30.672Z · score: 6 (3 votes) · EA · GW

Thanks for writing this up, I think it's really useful to collate these resources together. Although I think some of the sources are a bit out of date and some recent write ups indicate the opposite advice in some situations - one example being outreach techniques.

Facebook advertisement, direct messages and subscriptions are very effective
for outreach but are costly. Email lists and word of mouth are not effective.

I would say that email lists and word of mouth have been the two most useful ways of building up a community in London, this could potentially be down to how it's done, but we stopped doing FB adverts and meetup events as it would generally attract people who aren't as interested in EA.

I also have this list of various community building resources I have found useful over the last few years that might have some things that could be added to the literature review.

Comment by davidnash on "Why Nations Fail" and the long-termist view of global poverty · 2019-07-16T09:09:34.588Z · score: 18 (11 votes) · EA · GW

I wrote a similar post about this a few months ago, a few days before GiveWell announced they were looking into a wider range of interventions.

The EA fund for global development seems to be the easiest way to get funding towards this area. I suspect that most donors involved in EA would be happy to fund interventions with less hard evidence if given the choice.

One reason why there may be a lack of conversation in this area is that there are many organisations and 10,000+ experts in international development and ways to engage that don't involve EA. Whereas in factory farming and emerging technology risks there are fewer places for people to go to discuss these causes and so discussion happens in EA spaces (until causes get big enough to create their own networks).

Comment by davidnash on Should we talk about altruism or talk about justice? · 2019-07-07T08:56:22.491Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · EA · GW

There is a paper from the Centre for Global Development that might be relevant.

"We Can Learn a Lot about Improving Girls’ Education from Interventions That Don’t Target Girls"

Comment by davidnash on Advice for an Undergrad · 2019-07-04T09:15:57.107Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · EA · GW

It is probably this career discussion one.

Comment by davidnash on Latest EA Updates for June 2019 · 2019-07-03T18:04:44.265Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · EA · GW

One low cost way of doing this, if the EA newsletter people thought it was useful, would be to just have a link in the main newsletter for the recent updates post.

Comment by davidnash on Latest EA Updates for June 2019 · 2019-07-03T08:28:45.603Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · EA · GW

I'd be happy if someone else wanted to send out these updates or put them on a website.

These updates don't add any extra info so if people are happy to ignore jobs/events they could sign up or use an RSS feed for the website.

Comment by davidnash on What books or bodies of work, not about EA or EA cause areas, might be beneficial to EAs? · 2019-06-14T11:43:46.854Z · score: 8 (3 votes) · EA · GW

The books on this list by conceptually are quite useful. The ones I've read and thought are useful I've listed below.


Thinking Fast and Slow

The Undercover Economist

The Righteous Mind

Predictably Irrational

The Better Angels of our Nature



The Signal and the Noise

Some others I have found useful

4DX - How to execute plans efficiently (meant more for people in charge of orgs or teams but still applicable to individuals)

Good Strategy/Bad Strategy - Summary of a useful strategy framework

The Charisma Myth

Lean Startup

The Art of Gathering

The Art of Community

You Are Not So Smart

Also two EA reading lists that cover poverty, future generations, animal welfare, psychology, productivity, career/business and advocacy.

List 1

List 2

Comment by davidnash on Latest EA Updates for May 2019 · 2019-06-12T21:04:41.425Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · EA · GW

Not the posts exactly, but there is the EA London blog page which contains all the newsletters although they include events and job postings that might be less relevant.

Comment by davidnash on Latest EA Updates for May 2019 · 2019-06-05T07:30:52.392Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · EA · GW

I'd be happy for other people to make posts if they've found something they want to dive into.

Comment by davidnash on [Link] "Radical Consequence and Heretical Knots" – an ethnography of the London EA community · 2019-05-09T21:27:54.198Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · EA · GW

I think the gist of the "Heretical Knot" is that we could always do more good, and so we are always second guessing ourselves and burning out attempting to do more.

Comment by davidnash on I want an ethnography of EA · 2019-05-09T10:45:45.509Z · score: 13 (4 votes) · EA · GW

Here is an edited version of the dissertation mentioned earlier. It has had most of the non EA London related content removed to help make it more relevant.

An​ ​ethnographic​ ​exploration​ ​of​ ​ethics, empathy​ ​and​ ​data​ ​practises​ ​within​ ​the​ ​London​ ​Effective​ ​Altruist​ ​community

Comment by davidnash on I want an ethnography of EA · 2019-05-03T08:38:09.651Z · score: 23 (13 votes) · EA · GW

I remember a couple of people doing something slightly similar to this.

Dan Artus wrote a dissertation in 2018 - "​An​ ​ethnographic​ ​exploration​ ​of​ ​ethics,
empathy​ ​and​ ​data​ ​practises​ ​within​ ​the​ ​London​ ​Effective​ ​Altruist​ ​community"

Nick Philips wrote a thesis about the EA movement in 2015 -"Rational Faith: A Study of the Effective Altruism Movement "

Comment by davidnash on Psychedelics Normalization · 2019-04-26T09:22:25.021Z · score: 14 (8 votes) · EA · GW

Imperial university has just launched the worlds first centre for psychedelics research.

"The new Imperial Centre for Psychedelic Research will build on over a decade of pioneering work in this area carried out at Imperial, including a clinical trial that has kick-started global efforts to develop psilocybin therapy into a licensed treatment for depression. "

Comment by davidnash on Reasons to eat meat · 2019-04-22T08:39:33.913Z · score: 7 (10 votes) · EA · GW

I'm not sure that many people who push for moral obligations hold inconsistent views. These seem like two mainly distinct sets of people.

Most people I speak to either think people are morally obligated to do actions that might improve the world, whether that's veganism, frugality etc or they take the more laid back approach.

I'd also say there are some differences between eating factory farmed meat and spending on ineffective charities, mainly that a world that still has factory farmed meat is hard to imagine as one of the best worlds compared to one where people still give money to ineffective charities.

Comment by davidnash on Local Effective Altruism Network's New Focus for 2019 · 2019-03-31T14:57:01.140Z · score: 5 (4 votes) · EA · GW

I think they said they were shifting it to CEA. That probably makes sense to have one organisation deal with grants, support and tech rather than two separate ones.

Comment by davidnash on Why is the EA Hotel having trouble fundraising? · 2019-03-28T22:41:42.573Z · score: 4 (3 votes) · EA · GW

I think I disagree with this piece because although I think it's true that places are valuable for connecting, that doesn't necessarily mean it has to be a place that people own. In London we can use pubs, cafes and parks, often for free with just a picnic blanket indicating the edge of this space that separates the conversations from the outside world.

Comment by davidnash on The career and the community · 2019-03-22T22:42:23.124Z · score: 6 (5 votes) · EA · GW

Similar to Milan I agree with the main point of your comment and also think that the EA community conforms less than the majority of communities.

Maybe ironically, I also think that there is a relative lack of experience with communities in general among a lot of people interested in EA, which makes it harder for people to know what is expected, such as using group slang, strong identities, close connections and group 'rituals' which are very common in most communities.

Comment by davidnash on I'll Fund You to Give Away 'Doing Good Better' - Surprisingly Effective? · 2019-03-22T10:43:20.524Z · score: 3 (3 votes) · EA · GW

It's good to see people trying small low cost experiments like this although I suspect there are diminishing returns to how many people will be interested if you try a similar post again but that's also why it's good that you've given a framework for others to copy.

At EA London I haven't given as many books out in the last 12 months as the previous 12 as I've usually only given them to people after a 1-1 meeting or significant interest from someone at an event where it seems more likely that they'll actually read it and want to take away some advice rather than offering to give it to people who are more interested in the idea of a "free book".

Comment by davidnash on Why doesn't the EA forum have curated posts or sequences? · 2019-03-21T15:10:13.601Z · score: 8 (4 votes) · EA · GW

The EA forum is a forum with just two categories so it functions more like a news board, which means most conversation ends up happening in bespoke Facebook groups for various causes, careers and interest groups. Facebook has a similar problem of losing good posts and conversations, which might have been stickied in a traditional forum with multiple categories and sub-categories.

There may be advantages to having these discussions happen on Facebook as people might be more likely to check, although it does make it hard to find out where the conversations are happening.

Comment by davidnash on The career and the community · 2019-03-21T15:00:34.980Z · score: 13 (12 votes) · EA · GW

I massively agree with most of this and when talking to people about careers I try to help them find a field that fascinates them and has the potential to be leveraged in the future. At the risk of over simplifying, EA organisations seem to be "experience-constrained" which can't be solved by just getting smart graduates to work in EA jobs.

I think I disagree slightly that there needs to be a "task Y", it may be the case that some people will have an interest in EA but wont be able to contribute. Just as there people who have an interest in evidence based medicine but don't get an opportunity to contribute to medical journals or become doctors. The aim of EA isn't to make use of all resources available, even if it may seem like a lost opportunity not to.

Also I think the EA community is a subset of the EA movement, and lots of people have positive impact whilst rarely or never engaging online/in person and it might be a mistake to focus on just the community part. This post though might lead to people being happier to focus on their own field and potentially reengaging when it makes sense to.