The GiveWell Blog

Excited altruism

Critics of effective altruism worry that we’re trying to choose causes based on calculations about how to help the world as much as possible, rather than based on what causes excite us. They worry that we therefore won’t be fully engaged in, or committed to, the causes we pick. (More) I think such people fundamentally…

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Effective altruism

We’re proud to be part of the nascent “effective altruist” movement. Effective altruism has been discussed elsewhere (see Peter Singer’s TED talk and Wikipedia); this post gives our take on what it is and isn’t. What is effective altruism?To us, “effective altruism” means trying to do as much good as possible with each dollar and…

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The moral case for giving doesn’t rely on questionable quantitative estimates

In light of Peter Singer’s TED talk and Dylan Matthews’s piece on “earning to give,” there’s been a fair amount of discussion recently of what one might call “Peter Singer’s challenge,” which I’d roughly summarize as follows: By giving $X to the right charity, you can save a human life. This fact has multiple surprising…

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