The GiveWell Blog

Co-funding partnership with Kaitlyn Trigger and Mike Krieger

We are excited to announce a new co-funding partnership with Kaitlyn Trigger and her fiancé Mike Krieger (co-founder of Instagram). They have committed to learning with us and supporting the Open Philanthropy Project’s work over the next two years. It’s an opportunity for us to experiment with a new type of partnership and a lower-volume, higher-intensity way of communicating about our work.

Kaitlyn and Mike have made a financial commitment of $750,000 over the next two years. 10% will go to GiveWell to support operations related to the Open Philanthropy Project. 90% will be allocated to grants identified and recommended through the Open Philanthropy Project process. We expect that the funds will be allocated evenly to all grants, rather than selectively allocated on the basis of individual grants.

We have reserved a desk in the office for Kaitlyn, and she expects to spend around two days a week there. While she also will work on her own projects, she will join team meetings (both regular and impromptu) that are of interest to her, be included in internal correspondence around our process, and do some work (the nature of which we haven’t yet settled on) to help move the project forward. Our goal is to give her an inside look at the Open Philanthropy Project process and generally be a resource to her in learning about how to give as effectively as possible.

To date, we haven’t actively sought partnerships along these lines. Kaitlyn and Mike suggested it, and we thought this would be an excellent opportunity to experiment with a new partnership. We don’t yet know what the long-term model for partnerships looks like. We have limited capacity for such partnerships, so if demand were high, we could imagine needing a process for selecting the most promising ones (promising in terms of furthering our mission by significantly improving the effectiveness of people giving significant amounts) and/or rotating partners over time.

We do think that such partnerships could turn out to be a major long-term part of what the Open Philanthropy Project has to offer. We believe the Open Philanthropy Project process and recommendations are significantly harder to absorb the thinking behind than our top charities process and recommendations, so a low-volume, high-intensity service like this could be very helpful. Partnerships like this one could give us a chance to develop strong relationships with major funders and help them truly follow and engage with our work – as well as spread the word about it effectively – and thus could account for a good deal of our influence. We generally try to communicate openly about our work in a variety of different ways, and this sort of partnership could be an important complement to those.

But for now, we’re just looking forward to getting to know Kaitlyn and Mike better, being a resource to them, and experimenting with what a co-funding partnership looks like. We’ve really enjoyed working with them so far.