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casebash comments on Effective altruism is self-recommending - Less Wrong

41 Post author: Benquo 21 April 2017 06:37PM

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Comment author: Benquo 21 April 2017 06:39:45PM 4 points [-]

Claim 4: EA Funds represents a shift from EA evaluating programs' effectiveness, to assuming EA's effectiveness.

If you want to discuss this claim, I encourage you to do it as a reply to this comment.

Comment author: casebash 22 April 2017 03:59:12PM 0 points [-]

No, because the fund managers will report on the success or failure of their investments. If the funds don't perform, then their donations will fall.

Comment author: peter_hurford 23 April 2017 07:20:30PM 2 points [-]

Why do you think this? The outside view suggests this won't happen -- disclosing success and failure is uncommon in the non-profit space.

Comment author: casebash 23 April 2017 11:59:22PM 0 points [-]

A major proportion of the clients will be EAs

Comment author: ChristianKl 22 April 2017 05:03:25PM 1 point [-]

Why are the fund managers going to report on the success of their investments when an organisation like GiveWell doesn't do this (as per the example in the OP)?

Comment author: casebash 22 April 2017 10:51:14PM 0 points [-]

Because people expect this from funds.

Comment author: ChristianKl 23 April 2017 06:30:01AM 1 point [-]

You think people don't expect it from GiveWell?

Comment author: casebash 24 April 2017 12:00:48AM 2 points [-]

They expect Givewell to update its recommendations, but they don't necessarily expect Givewell to evaluate just how wrong a previous past recommendation was. Not yet anyway, but maybe this post will change this.

Comment author: ChristianKl 24 April 2017 08:28:13AM 0 points [-]

That still leaves the question why you think people expect from funds to report on the success of their investments but don't expect it from GiveWell.

Comment author: casebash 24 April 2017 10:55:14PM 0 points [-]

Because the whole point of these funds is that they have the opportunity to invest in newer and riskier ventures. On the other hand, Givewell tries to look for interventions with a strong evidence base.

Comment author: whpearson 24 April 2017 06:20:48PM 0 points [-]

There is no cashing out of the money to GiveWell. At no point will you go to it and find out how much good it has done (easily). If it turns out GiveWell did poorly all you have is the opportunity of having donated to another charity which also probably isn't reporting its successes objectively.

For a fund, you have skin in the game. You make plans like retirement/housing/yacht where the value has to be going up or if not going up you have to alter your plans. This puts it on a different mental level.

Comment author: ChristianKl 24 April 2017 08:20:04PM 0 points [-]

As far as I understand the EA funds there's no cashing out of the money that's donated to them.

Comment author: whpearson 24 April 2017 08:31:04PM 0 points [-]

Sorry misread this thread (thought it was talking about investment funds).