Institutional Change in Animal Rights vs. Global Poverty

Crossposted at zachgroff.com but edited for an audience already familiar with EA. When I was a sophomore in college, I stumbled into a lecture by the economist I now work for, Dean Karlan, on the use of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) in economic development. I was inspired and excited. I’d... Read More

The Poor Meat Investor Problem

Crossposted with zachgroff.com   Scott Weathers wrote a  post  recently on “the poor meat eater problem,” wherein people who want to address global poverty but are anti-speciesist have to deal with the worry that their money will hurt a great number of animals. Today I want to turn to a... Read More

Announcing ImpactMatters: Auditing Charity Impact across Causes

Impact Matters  just launched today, an organization that is trying to complement GiveWell by auditing charities across sectors for their use of evidence and impact. In their own words: We believe in a simple philosophy: choose your cause with your heart, but your nonprofit with your head. A powerful mission... Read More

A Note on Framing Criticisms of Effective Altruism

Cross posted on zachgroff.com This has been said, and better, by  Rob Wiblin  and others, but I'm restating it here to draw attention to its implications. Many criticisms of effective altruism (even the excellent ones in this  Boston Review forum ) go like this: 1) X is important (or Y... Read More

That UMD Extra Credit Question

Crossposted on zachgroff.com A discussion recently erupted with several friends over a tweet about an extra credit question posed by a professor at the University of Maryland: WHAT KIND OF PROFESSOR DOES THIS pic.twitter.com/ACtQ0FCwRm — name (@shaunhin) July 1, 2015 One of my friends commented that the rational thing to... Read More

Collective Action and Individual Impact, Part II

Cross posted at zachgroff.com In my last long post, I argued that if we can greatly help a promising collective action, we are obligated to do so. I did not argue that any particular protest has or will be effective, although I offered a few illustrative examples. I thank Carl... Read More

Collective Action and Individual Impact

Cross posted at zachgroff.com. In September 2014, 400,000 people took to the streets of New York City to protest inaction against climate change in what was the single biggest demonstration of the last decade in the United States. In the previous month, and in nearly every month since, protests against... Read More