Effective Altruism 80,000 hours workshop materials & outline (and Feb 10 ’19 KC meetup notes)
Intro & overview
This is a brief overview of an “Introduction to 80,000 Hours” workshop written by fellow LessWronger Bae’s Theorem. It’s to the point - a set of slides & an outline going over 80k hours’ key points and core advice, then helping attendees apply it first to an outside party, then to themselves.
You can find the 15-slide presentation here: https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1raV5fr7HryQ-3tEskHgfemje2SlSgtLCESo-mqZ2nVo/edit#slide=id.p
The (revised) article that Bae’s Theorem based the content off of can be found here: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1clHJQaoAt9YaguMZFH6gkDSPTsolEylME92X2dBnaWk/edit This document also includes the 1-page handout he used in the workshop for easy reference during the activities.
General content outline:
Introduction to 80,000 Hours as an organization
A summary of 80k Hours’ claims
The 80k Hours’ career decision process
Checking personal fit
Mitigating accidental harm
Building career capital
Taking care of yourself and your mental health
Coordinating with others & communities
Taking measured risks
Options to make a difference in any career
ACTIVITY: Mock career advising interview with an impact-minded college student (done to give practice thinking in EA mindset without touching personal identity)
BREAKOUT: Split into groups of 2-3 and take 6 minutes to think of possible short-term and long-term actions each can take to improve the impact of their career. Discuss with the group.
After the workshop, we had a brief discussion on group norms, talked about other activities we could take on as a group to boost our impact, and the topic for the next meetup (effective interventions for global poverty).
There’s a slight schism in the group, between people who want to *take action NOW* even if it’s not strictly the most effective (e.g. do research on the efficacy of local charities, volunteer somewhere), and people who want to focus more strictly on generating donations & awareness for EA causes.
There are two recurring arguments for the first approach. First, by taking local community action, we’d raise the visibility of our EA group and EA in general, while also painting it in a positive light for anyone encountering it. This would (hopefully) have the effect of increasing group membership and EA donations in the medium and long run. Second, taking regular action to do good in our community would “foster our moral core”, connecting us more deeply to the people we’re trying to help and practicing minor self-sacrifice for the good of others. This would, in theory, help us stick to our altruistic aspirations by keeping us connected to those needing help.
We’re still discussing paths forward, but there may be middle options (e.g. attempting systematic fixes for neighborhoods with extreme concentrated poverty). Regardless, we’re still a new group so there’s some time to figure these things out.
We’re also stabilizing the organizer group—one early team member quit, so we’re bringing on two new people to help out and expand the voices on the team. They’ll help with social media and planning growth.