The GiveWell Blog

Holden’s general notes from living in India

Last year, the staff of GiveWell moved to Mumbai for several months. We did this largely for personal reasons (our staff is small enough that we were able to coordinate it, and we all thought it would be interesting) but also took advantage of our time there to visit 20 nonprofits (some of them more… Read More

More Than Good Intentions by Dean Karlan and Jacob Appel: Our review

A few disclosures regarding this book: Innovations for Poverty Action is a client of Sona Partners, and Tim Ogden of Sona Partners sits on our Board. We are currently considering Innovations for Poverty Action for a recommendation. We sent the authors of the book an early draft of this review and have made modifications after… Read More

Three Cups of Tea scandal: Why we had the right bottom line on the Central Asia Institute

There has been a lot of coverage of the scandals around the Central Asia Institute. The founder has been accused of fabricating inspiring stories, as well as of spending less than half of the millions of dollars he’s raised on building schools. The Central Asia Institute receives four stars from Charity Navigator (archived) and had… Read More

PSI rating change

We recently published an updated review of PSI based on conversations over the past year with PSI staff and additional analysis. We now rate PSI as a “Notable” organization, and no longer list it among our top-rated charities. (Note that PSI is not the only organization whose rating changed in 2010: we similarly “downgraded” both… Read More

Japan update 4/13/11

It’s been roughly a month since the devastating 9.0 earthquake in Japan. We’ve been continuing to follow the situation and re-examine our recommendations for donors. At this point we feel that The situation in Japan has recently worsened, with aftershocks and negative developments regarding the nuclear crisis. It is too early to tell whether this… Read More