EA Newsletter June 16, 2018

Effective Altruism Newsletter

June 16, 2018

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Introducing Charity Entrepreneurship, an exciting new research and training program designed to identify promising charity startup ideas and founders and offer them incubation.

An introductory article about the effective altruism movement was recently featured in the print edition of The Economist. (We’d like to add that EA is about a lot more than effective donations.)

Should effective altruism groups continue to focus on community building rather than direct work? CEA has argued for the former, whilst in this article, Richenda Herzig argues the potential value of the latter.

Speaking of direct work, Evan Gaensbauer has compiled a list of EA-related remote volunteer opportunities across a wide range of projects and organizations.

100 years after the 1918 influenza epidemic, which killed an estimated 50 million people, Bill Gates gives a short summary on the global state of pandemic preparedness. This podcast interview discusses what actually happens in an epidemic outbreak, indicating changes we need to make to be prepared.

Starting a new project or organization is a risky endeavor, with the possibility of great success or total failure. Michael Plant gives a candid retrospective of his experience building Hippo, a happiness app that never quite was, and offers thoughts on what they did—and didn’t—learn from their startup failure.

In this 80,000 Hours podcast on AI strategy research, Rob Wiblin interviews Allan Dafoe, an assistant professor of political science at Yale University and Co-Director of the Governance of AI Program at the Future of Humanity Institute within the University of Oxford.

Announcements & Calls to Action

EA Global: London & EAGx Netherlands EA Global: London is taking place between October 26 and 28 at University College London. Apply now.Registration for EAGx Netherlands (June 29 - July 1) will close on June 22 or when tickets sell out. Register now.

GFI Good Food Conference 2018 Registration is open for the Good Food Conference on September 6-7, which will facilitate critical conversations between renowned scientists, policymakers, investors, entrepreneurs, and companies interested in plant-based and clean meat, as well as their supporting technologies. The event will take place at UC Berkeley and is co-organized and co-hosted by Dr. Mark Post, creator of the world’s first meat-free burger.

Envision Conference 2018 Envision, partnered with FLI, is looking to host Envision Conference outside of Princeton in collaboration with another organization. The conference aims to build long-term capacity, increase critical thinking and heighten awareness of existential and catastrophic risks among domain leaders by targeting college students and recent graduates.

AI Safety Camp 2018 Would you like to work on AI safety or strategy research? The second installment of the AI Safety Camp is one way to make a start! The camp will take place in Prague from October 4 to 14, and aims to help aspiring researchers build their portfolios and connect with others in the field. Applications close July 4.

Human-aligned AI Summer School 2018 The first summer school on Human-aligned AI will be held in Prague from August 2 to 5 at the Charles University. Featured topics include inverse reinforcement learning, modeling of bounded and irrational agents, and an overview of the latest alignment frameworks. The program is targeted at researchers and postgraduate students with an interest in exploring alignment.

EA Hotel Want to devote yourself to high-impact direct work but can’t because of financial constraints? Does living and working rent-free at a seaside resort in Blackpool, England appeal to you? If so, Greg Colbourn’s EA Hotel might be the place for you: Learn more about this new project and how you can get involved.

Timeless Classics

Where justice, freedom and fairness frequently obfuscate moral discussions surrounding global health, Toby Ord outlines why cost-effectiveness is a moral imperative that cannot be dismissed.


80,000 Hours Released 10 podcasts, including some of the most popular so far, such as Bryan Caplan on why much of  education is showing off and Anders Sandberg on new solutions to the Fermi paradox. They also made their targets for the last quarter and updated plans for the coming months.

Centre for Effective Altruism EA Global: San Francisco took place June 8-10. View the conference highlights here and follow EA Global on Youtube and Facebook for more photos and videos, coming soon.

Centre for the Study of Existential Risk CSER released a Six Month Report (Nov’17-May’18), published a paper on Accounting for the Neglected Dimensions of AI Progress, and was featured in a Naked Scientists episode Planet B: Should We Colonise Space? At United Nations 2nd AI for Good Global Summit, a joint CSER/CFI team led one of the four 'Tracks', on Trust in AI. Adrian Currie launched his new book Rock, Bone and Ruin.

Future of Humanity Institute Allan Dafoe discussed the politics of AI with Rob Wiblin (podcast). FHI will be launching its research scholars program. Roles will be advertised here in June. Hiring will be a big thrust for FHI in June and July. They will also be opening project management roles for the scholars program and the Governance of AI program.

GiveWell GiveWell recently allocated approximately $3 million in discretionary funds from the first quarter of 2018 to the Against Malaria Foundation (70 percent) and the Schistosomiasis Control Initiative (30 percent), and published a blog post explaining this decision. In addition, The Economist featured GiveWell in an article about effective altruism.

Open Philanthropy Project The Open Philanthropy Project announced its first class of AI Fellows receiving five years of PhD support, as well as grants of $5 million to the Centre for Effective Altruism, $525,000 to Ought, and $350,000 to ACTAsia. Open Phil also published a blog post about partnerships with external donors.

Rethink Charity Since launching in November, RC Forward has now surpassed $2M CAD of funds routed to effective charities. The EA Survey team broke their survey submission record.

The Life You Can Save The Giving Game Project has published an annual report discussing its philanthropy education work, the evidence base surrounding that work, and its plans for the future.


Animal Charity Evaluators is recruiting a Director of Research and a Data Analyst.

The Centre for Effective Altruism is hiring for operations roles (US and UK), events specialists, community specialists, a grants evaluator and a project manager.

The Future of Humanity Institute is accepting applications for their new Research Scholars Programme.

GiveWell is hiring a Research Analyst and Senior Research Analyst.

OpenPhil is hiring a Grants Associate and an Operations Associate.

Check out the summer visiting researcher programme at the Global Priorities Institute.

Don’t forget to visit the newly updated 80,000 hours jobs board for further opportunities.

Go forth and do the most good! Let us know how you liked this edition and how we can improve further.

If you’re interested in past editions of this newsletter, here is the full archive


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    The Effective Altruism Newsletter is a joint project between the Centre for Effective Altruism, and Rethink Charity.

This is an archived version of the EA Newsletter sent to 48,077 subscribers on June 16, 2018. To see the full archives, click here.

  • Should effective altruism groups continue to focus on community building rather than direct work? CEA has argued for the former, whilst in this article, Richenda Herzig argues the potential value of the latter.
  • EA Global: San Francisco took place June 8-10. View the conference highlights here.
  • EA Global: London is taking place between October 26 and 28 at University College London. Apply now.