November 2018 Newsletter

There are lots of people in the EA London community, a sample of which can be seen here in the members directory, and potentially the highest density of EA events anywhere in the world. But there are also quite a lot of missed connections and groups of people who could really enjoy learning from one another and haven't had the opportunity yet.

If you're interested in setting up a discussion group/running an event/collaborating on a project, or would like to see us do something that might have been neglected than you can fill out this form. You can also share with us existing events/projects that could be relevant for others interested in effective altruism. 

A recent resource is a Facebook poll of topics people are interested in discussing that has had almost 200 responses and might be a good place to reach out and start organising an event/1-1 chats.


Social: Newcomers
When: Saturday 3rd November
If you're new to the ideas of effective altruism or haven't been to any events before, this is a good way to start learning more

Q&A: How to Contribute to Technical AI Safety
When: Saturday 3rd November
This event is aimed at people who are planning or actively considering moving into technical AI safety research

Talk: Nanomaterials
When: Tuesday 13th November
A Gresham lecture looking at nanoscale materials, how they are changing our world and potential risks

Talk: Enormous Volcanic Eruptions
When: Wednesday 14th November
A Gresham lecture considering huge volcanic eruptions and possible environmental consequences

Social: Monthly Social
 Tuesday 20th November
No theme/structure - just come along and chat with others who are trying to do good, more details in the social group


What Londoners are up to . . . 
• Charlotte has started a newsletter covering the AI policy and strategy ecosystem in Europe

• Phil has written a comprehensive summary of tech products that are helping people today

• Jonathan has curated a long list of podcasts in the areas of effective altruism, rationality, natural sciences, social sciences, politics and self-improvement

• Jamie has written about sentientism as an upgrade of humanism

• Aveek has a post on whether people would give more to foreign aid if they knew the scale of global inequality

• Matt and Juliette have made a reading list for people interested in learning more about RCTs not being the 'gold standard' in global development

• Bryn has created extended notes on the book Superintelligence

• Michael has created a happiness manifesto, arguing effective altruism can and should use happiness surveys to determine cost-effectiveness which would result in different charity recommendations

• Saulius has been looking at if there has been a change in the number of vegans and vegetarians over time

• Ben has made a document looking at what the most effective individual actions are for reducing carbon emissions

• Claire has a post discussing the marketing challenges of clean meat being seen as unnatural

Latest Jobs

• GPI are looking for a Head of Research Operations. Closes 19th November

• Rethink Priorities are looking to hire senior and junior researchers (remote). Closes November 4th

• CSER are looking for an academic programme manager. Closes 11th November

• FHI have eight research scholarships for students whose research aims to answer crucial questions for improving the long-term prospects of humanity. Candidates will be considered from a range of disciplines, including computer science, economics, international relations, mathematics, philosophy, and public policy.  

• GPI have four DPhil scholarships at Oxford, two in economics and two in philosophy

• CEA are looking for an events producer for EAG 2019. Closes 4th November

• Founders Pledge are hiring a programmes curator

• GFI are hiring a managing director for Europe

• Our World in Data are looking for researchers

• DeepMind are looking for 10+ positions, including science writerresearch scientistresearch engineerrobotics engineersoftware engineer (security)people and culture partnerlearning partnerdata solutionsprogram manager and operations analyst

• There are also roles in DeepMind Health - looking at improving healthcare with new technologies - technical writerclinical safety officerclinical advisordevops engineerUX researchersupport manageriOS engineer

• OpenAI are looking for people to work with them who are studying AI or wanting to transition from another speciality 

• The All-Party Parliamentary Group for Future Generations is looking for a parliamentary coordinator. Closes 14th November

• Students for High-Impact Charity are looking for an instructor and outreach officer. Closes 4th November

• GFI have research grants of up to $250,000 for organisations/individuals in any sector who want to research critical science and technology barriers facing the plant-based and clean meat industries. Closes 21st November

• UCL Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose has announced two PhD studentships, including a focus on the political economy of AI. Closes 15th November

• 80,000 Hours job board with filters by location, problem area and role type. You can also sign up to their career coaching waitlist here

• If you want to meet up and discuss career options in person, you can apply via this form
 • There is also the EA London members directory with people in different careers who may be able to help advise

Latest Research and Updates

• Ways people trying to do good accidentally make things worse, and how to avoid them

• Survey of EA org leaders about what skills and experience they most need

• Julie Wise writing on how no one is a statistic

• Vox has a new department, Future Perfect, reporting the news with an effective altruism angle, they have started with a podcast asking Bill Gates what they think about global poverty, AI and clean meat

• Mind Ease is a new mental health intervention - also with in depth responses in the comments

• Lets Fund is a new organisation looking to help people discover, learn about and fund breakthrough research, policy and advocacy projects

• The new EA Angel group is looking for funders, applicants and volunteers to help improve the early-stage funding landscape in the effective altruism community

• CSER have curated 15 papers together in a special issue bringing together a wide range of research on existential and catastrophic risk. They also have five book recommendations related to these subjects

• A post on the potential bottlenecks and solutions in the existential risk ecosystem

• A deeper dive into providing pain relief to lower income countries and potential funding opportunities

• A new 80,000 hour career review on going into academic research

• BIT is running 18 RCTs to look into capacity building (including tax compliance, birth registration and education) in Indonesia, Bangladesh and Guatemala

• Podcast with economist Tyler Cowen suggesting that sustainable economic growth is the best way to safeguard the future of humanity

• Hilary Greaves on moral cluelessness, population ethics and the vision for GPI

• A look at potential negative externalities of cash transfers

• Paul Christiano on how humanity might progressively hand over decision-making to AI systems

• A new 80,000 hours article with potential careers to go into based on whether you already have a particular strength or expertise

• There are new management teams for EA funds, including London based advisers Luke, Denise, Alex, Tara, Jamie and Natalie 

• Microsummaries of 150+ papers in the newest development economics research 

• Martin Rees has released a book looking at the future prospects of humanity. And an interview with Vox

• Peter Singer with an article looking at whether clean meat can save the planet

• Allan Dafoe from FHI with a document on the research agenda for AI governance

• Michelle Hutchinson on keeping absolutes in mind and not just looking at relative values

• A NYT feature on a project to give ex-felons voting rights, potentially re-enfranchising 1.5 million people, helped with funding from Open Philanthropy

• Open Phil with a summary of why they focus on scientific research, where they've granted $67 million and an open call for grant proposals

• Lewis Bollard looking at whether animal advocates should engage in U.S. politics

• A post on the value of being world class in a non traditional area

• A post looking at effective altruism and the law of diminishing marginal effect

• A summary of two possible interventions to reduce intimate partner violence

• A post on the rationale behind a GiveWell Incubation Grant to Evidence Action Beta

• A slide deck looking at psychedelics as a potential cause area

• GFI on the data behind why they use the term 'clean meat' and why it might be useful to sometimes refer to 'cultured meat'

• ODI have a toolkit  that provides a step-by-step approach to help researchers plan for, monitor and improve the impact their research has on policy and practice

• An FLI podcast looking at the role of automation in the nuclear sphere

• Utility Farm have announced the compassionate cat grant to attempt to reduce suffering of birds and small mammals

• A collection of resources for people looking into the generalist vs specialist question