Comment author: SiebeRozendal 13 June 2018 01:28:44PM 0 points [-]

What did you think about the length of the retreat? Would people have liked to stay longer? We're planning to organize a retreat from Thursday to Sunday in The Netherlands in between Christmas and New Year's.

Comment author: saulius  (EA Profile) 13 June 2018 08:03:27PM *  1 point [-]

I don't know, we simply didn't talk about that at all. My guess is that 4 days is not too long. EA globals sometimes last 3 days, if you include the social on Friday. I believe that a recent group organisers' retreat lasted an entire week. An AI camp lasted 10 days. These latter two events are not quite the same, but I guess you could ask Remmelt Ellen whether they felt too long, I believe he was present in both of them. Hmm, the fact that your event is during winter could matter a bit though, because going outside is usually a refreshing change of atmoshpere during such things.

By the way, this was not a retreat, we did it in an office in London and people slept elsewhere.

Comment author: Jiri_Nadvornik 13 June 2018 07:58:05AM *  1 point [-]

Hi Saulius. CZEA retreat organizer here.

Thank you for this report.

We did "concept explaining somewhat differently:

  • a) people could fill out form w/ list of concepts they can/want explain several days earlier. They also had links to recommended articles for many of concepts offered.
  • b) during activity we projected on a screen list of groups (~3 people learning, one teaching) and what is their concept for this session.
  • c) after 15 minutes we hit the gong and projected list of new groups with new topics.

It seems to me that Circling and Hamming circles need the people to feel close and trusting each other. We thought about doing Hamming circles on Saturday evening but decided to do something else because the atmosphere was not right. How well it worked for you?

Comment author: saulius  (EA Profile) 13 June 2018 07:24:22PM 0 points [-]

oh, I didn't notice that there was a question about circling as well. There are circling meetups where I did circling with strangers and it was great. So it's not necessary to be close with people before, though the experience is quite different if you are. I imagine that many people will find circling awkward no matter what but in this case I think we simply did not have enough time to get into it. We only allocated 1 hour for it (and I'm not sure even that is enough) and then we decided to do it in the park but walking to the park took much more time than expected. It was the lowest rated activity (3.7) but I didn't include it in the table of the article because I believe that it wasn't given a fair chance.

Comment author: Jiri_Nadvornik 13 June 2018 07:58:05AM *  1 point [-]

Hi Saulius. CZEA retreat organizer here.

Thank you for this report.

We did "concept explaining somewhat differently:

  • a) people could fill out form w/ list of concepts they can/want explain several days earlier. They also had links to recommended articles for many of concepts offered.
  • b) during activity we projected on a screen list of groups (~3 people learning, one teaching) and what is their concept for this session.
  • c) after 15 minutes we hit the gong and projected list of new groups with new topics.

It seems to me that Circling and Hamming circles need the people to feel close and trusting each other. We thought about doing Hamming circles on Saturday evening but decided to do something else because the atmosphere was not right. How well it worked for you?

Comment author: saulius  (EA Profile) 13 June 2018 12:31:25PM 1 point [-]

I see, that is very different.

I only know about the feedback I already presented and the one hamming circle I myself participated in. In my circle all 3 of us were quite connected already. It may have helped but I'm not sure it was necessary. Both of them didn't know what to do with their careers so it was like a mini career-coaching session. It felt productive.

Comment author: Jiri_Nadvornik 13 June 2018 08:07:03AM 0 points [-]

A little bit more info about explaining concepts activity.

Comment author: saulius  (EA Profile) 13 June 2018 11:33:46AM 2 points [-]

I believe you meant to link to this comment of yours :)

Comment author: MichaelPlant 12 June 2018 01:43:12PM 4 points [-]

Thanks for writing this up. Three questions

The numbers on how useful things are seem quite low to me. What did you write as the ends of the scale? I'm thinking in terms of net promoter scores where anything below a 9 or a 10 is considered neutral or bad.

Can you explain Hamming circles? I couldn't find out how they worked even after a quick google.

Did you ask people if there was anything they wanted to do on the weekend but didn't do? I'd be curious to see if people came up with anything.

Comment author: saulius  (EA Profile) 12 June 2018 03:32:34PM *  1 point [-]

3) Because of your question I added a link to the summary of the responses to the feedback form to the article. Here are responses I see that suggest different activities:

  • Perhaps a little more discussion about actual causes e.g. what should be done about AI
  • In addition to the 1-1s(which were really useful), the could have been some more structured socialising (eg having people come together in groups of 3 and talk about what they care about, what their problems are, etc and switch groups in eg 5 minute intervals)
  • Maybe one minute intros could be on a post it on a wall so that people coming a day late still know who does what.

We also had some event ideas ourselves that we decided not to include in the weekend:

  • Community health session (a discussion of ways to improve the health of the EA community, be that through more diversity, more mutual support etc.)
  • Self-care for the altruistic (discussion and support session)
  • Discussions/anti-debate on cause prioritisation
  • Watching a video of a talk together and then discussing it (vote on a talk to watch during the event)
  • Values session: discussing why we have certain moral values
  • Problem-solving circle (participants raise problems they have and others try to help them)
  • The Humane League Work Party (Encouraging companies to commit to improving conditions on farms - writing letters & emails, phone calls, petitions. Would have been an option throughout the event.)
  • Gathering and interpreting data relating to the impact of charities for SoGive
Comment author: MichaelPlant 12 June 2018 01:43:12PM 4 points [-]

Thanks for writing this up. Three questions

The numbers on how useful things are seem quite low to me. What did you write as the ends of the scale? I'm thinking in terms of net promoter scores where anything below a 9 or a 10 is considered neutral or bad.

Can you explain Hamming circles? I couldn't find out how they worked even after a quick google.

Did you ask people if there was anything they wanted to do on the weekend but didn't do? I'd be curious to see if people came up with anything.

Comment author: saulius  (EA Profile) 12 June 2018 02:44:42PM *  1 point [-]

2) I will ask the person who ran Hamming circles to explain it, I only participated in half of the event myself. You can get some idea from the slides (slides 21- 28).

Comment author: MichaelPlant 12 June 2018 01:43:12PM 4 points [-]

Thanks for writing this up. Three questions

The numbers on how useful things are seem quite low to me. What did you write as the ends of the scale? I'm thinking in terms of net promoter scores where anything below a 9 or a 10 is considered neutral or bad.

Can you explain Hamming circles? I couldn't find out how they worked even after a quick google.

Did you ask people if there was anything they wanted to do on the weekend but didn't do? I'd be curious to see if people came up with anything.

Comment author: saulius  (EA Profile) 12 June 2018 02:14:41PM *  1 point [-]

1) >"The numbers on how useful things are seem quite low to me..."

On the scale 1 was "Useless" and 10 was "Life-transforming". But just before asking for feedback, I made a change in the slides and added this meaning to the ratings of the events:

"3 - £100, 5 - £1,000, 8 - £10,000, 10 - £100,000 (e. g. career change)"

I explained it to people as well. This was... not smart. Because of this, some respondents gave low scores to all the events. E.g. someone said that the weekend was "Far more valuable (10-30x the counterfactual)" but did not gave any event a rating that is higher than 4. Others ignored the point and gave high ratings for all events.

That's why I weighted and normalised the ratings. If someone said that the weekend was "Vastly more valuable (>30x counterfactual)", I multiplied all their ratings by a constant so that their highest rating would be 10. If they rated the weekend as "Far more valuable (10-30x the counterfactual)", I multiplied all their ratings so that the highest rating would be 9. 8 for "Much more valuable", 7 for "Somewhat more valuable", and 6 for "About as valuable".

In response to Open Thread #39
Comment author: fergusb1232 29 May 2018 10:02:11PM 0 points [-]

Hi everyone.

I've been thinking about the potential effectiveness of lobbying for legalisation of psychedelics (whether individually or as part of a total legalisation of drugs) or the effectiveness of encouraging their use, legal or not, in terms of increasing the empathy of a population (and therefore their likelihood of becoming EAs).

Given their reputation for making people more open to new ideas, psychedelics could significantly bolster the number of people who agree with and act on EA principles.

Does anyone know of any research into anything related / any good articles on this?

Comment author: saulius  (EA Profile) 12 June 2018 12:47:54PM 0 points [-]
12

A lesson from an EA weekend in London: pairing people up to talk 1 on 1 for 30 mins seems to be very useful

We organised an EA weekend in London for people who are already familiar with EA. A review of CZEA "Intense EA Weekend" retreat was helpful to us so I am sharing the lessons we learned as well.   Table of contents Main lesson: 1 on 1s seem to be very... Read More
Comment author: saulius  (EA Profile) 01 June 2018 09:04:52AM 0 points [-]

I knew a lot of this before donating but I still lost some money. I'll describe how. I got my first UK job in September 2015 for a company that did not have payroll giving scheme set up. I donated some money in January 2016 and May 2016 and I let the charity claim gift aid (25%) in both cases. Since I was a 40% tax payer, I was eligible to claim the difference between my tax rate and gift aid (40%-25%=15%) from the government. However, I was told that I could only claim this difference for my May 2016 donation because I didn't pay enough tax in the tax year that ended on April 2016.

If you call tax helpline (https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/hm-revenue-customs/contact/income-tax-enquiries-for-individuals-pensioners-and-employees), they generally can answer all the questions about your situation.

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