Survey: Help Us Research Coordination Problems In The Rationalist/​EA Community

Hi ev­ery­one,

I think by this point we’re all aware that our world is in an on­go­ing state of mun­dane quasi-apoc­a­lypse on sev­eral di­men­sions. Cli­mate change, in­sect pop­u­la­tion de­cline, peo­ple dy­ing around the world at a re­lentless pace, AI risk, global ther­monu­clear war. The ques­tion is not what’s wrong with the world, you prob­a­bly have a good un­der­stand­ing of that. The ques­tion is what we’re go­ing to do about it. And for too many of us so far the an­swer is “well, noth­ing”.

Some of the low­est hang­ing fruit for chang­ing that cen­ters around co­or­di­na­tion. I’ve been cre­at­ing lists to map out the LessWrong Di­as­pora, what ac­tive pro­jects ex­ist in the com­mu­nity, tools to help peo­ple make their pro­jects more cred­ible, and more be­cause I be­lieved it would help cre­ate com­mon knowl­edge of what re­sources ex­ist. Even­tu­ally I re­al­ized that triv­ial in­con­ve­niences eat most of the gains. It’s nice that I can show new­bie or­ga­niz­ers a list of write­ups and re­ports, but be­comes less im­pres­sive when you con­sider it would take an im­prac­ti­cal amount of time for them to ab­sorb that knowl­edge. It doesn’t mat­ter how many re­sources I put to­gether if they can’t an­swer peo­ple’s ques­tions with­out a ton of effort.

I’m pre­pared to put to­gether a team that will run a ser­vice solv­ing ex­actly this prob­lem. A query about what the com­mu­nity has learned so far about mee­tups could be an­swered by a sum­mary from some­one who has done the re­search. But be­fore do­ing that I want to be sure this is a thing peo­ple ac­tu­ally want. I’d also like to con­firm that the nec­es­sary re­sources to co­or­di­nate ex­ist. For this rea­son I in­vite you to take a sur­vey look­ing at the com­bi­na­tion of tal­ent, pro­ject ideas, donor cap­i­tal, pop­u­lar­ity of cause ar­eas and will­ing­ness to work within the wider ra­tio­nal­ist and effec­tive al­tru­ist com­mu­ni­ties.

You should es­pe­cially take this sur­vey if:

  • You are look­ing for pro­jects to sup­port, ei­ther to help the pro­jects suc­ceed or as op­por­tu­ni­ties for you to level up

  • You have ideas for pro­jects re­lated to EA/​Ra­tion­al­ity/​X-Risk things for which you want col­lab­o­ra­tors or fi­nan­cial sup­port

  • You are available to help men­tor, as­sist and guide other peo­ple with their pro­jects

  • You want other peo­ple to cre­ate pro­jects you would be in­ter­ested in giv­ing money to. Or want to dis­cover ex­ist­ing pro­jects you can sup­port fi­nan­cially.

Sur­vey Link: https://​​goo.gl/​​forms/​​sKUk3YTLvhV12CpS2

In any case I will post a write up of the re­sults af­ter the sur­vey closes on May 1st.