An Approach to Do Good Better
What is Effective Altruism (EA)?
Effective altruism is about using evidence and careful analysis to figure out how to benefit others as much as possible, and taking action on that basis.
Effective Altruism is an idea, a set of principles, a community – a global movement.
Rather than just doing what feels right, we think that it is important to prioritise causes to support and evaluate our impact (even if they are best guesses/estimates).
With limited resources (i.e. our time, money and opportunities), effective altruism helps you to better figure out how you can make a greater difference for a better world – targeting problems that are important, neglected and very likely solvable.
What is the EA Community?
The effective altruism community is a global community of people who care deeply about the world, make benefiting others a significant part of their lives, and use evidence and reason to figure out how best to do so.
We are people who appreciate combining both the head and the heart. Our community believe that this is how we can create a greater impact on others' welfare, to improve the world.
There isn't one specific cause area that the whole EA community cares about. Some are involved in international health and development issues (i.e. global poverty). Others care more about farm animal welfare. Existential risks – global catastrophic risks, emerging technologies and long-term issues – are top concerns for many EAs.
EA in Singapore
Effective Altruism Singapore is one of 300+ EA chapters around the world, in different cities, countries and/or academic institutions.
We first started as a few people who were drawn to the idea that doing good has to be accompanied by evidence and it will be ideal to increase our impact by as much as possible.
In Nov 2015, we started organising our first EA monthly meetup and were surprised that others are interested in the idea of EA as well.
We have evolved and our chapter decided to prioritise our actions and activities around a few areas: Effective Giving, 80,000 Hours, Outreach, Research & Capacity Building.
We also have more co-organisers and volunteers in our chapter now. Reach out to us if you are interested to join us.
What are the
'Effective altruism Causes'?
Based on the importance, neglectedness and tractibility (INT) reasoning, there are several cause areas that are currently prominent and prioritised in the EA community globally:
- Fighting extreme poverty
- Animal suffering
- Improving the long-term future
This does not mean that the EA approach can only be applied in these areas.
There are many other promising causes that, while not currently the primary focuses of the effective altruism community, are plausible to consider for having a big impact.
The guiding principles of Effective altruism
As a guide, putting effective altruism into practice means acting in accordance with the core principles of:
- Commitment to Others
- Scientific Mindset
- Collaborative Spirit
EFFECTIVE ALTRUISM GLOBAL (EAG) CONFERENCE
EA Global is the annual conference of the effective altruism community. These conferences are probably most valuable to those who are familiar with the key ideas of effective altruism and want to deepen their engagement.
People seeking the opportunity to master more complex problems in effective altruism, learn new skills, or get help from the community and those who are actively seeking work focused on high-priority global issues will benefit most from the talks, workshops and conference connections.
Check out https://www.eaglobal.org/ for more info.