Himalaya: Listen. Learn. Grow.

4.8K Ratings
Open In App
title

80,000 Hours Podcast with Rob Wiblin

The 80000 Hours team

85
Followers
316
Plays
80,000 Hours Podcast with Rob Wiblin

80,000 Hours Podcast with Rob Wiblin

The 80000 Hours team

85
Followers
316
Plays
OVERVIEWEPISODESYOU MAY ALSO LIKE

Details

About Us

The world's most pressing problems & how to use your career to solve them.

Latest Episodes

Benjamin Todd on what the effective altruism community most needs (80k team chat #4)

In the last '80k team chat' with Ben Todd and Arden Koehler, we discussed what effective altruism is and isn't, and how to argue for it. In this episode we turn now to what the effective altruism community most needs. • Links to learn more, summary and full transcript • The 2020 Effective Altruism Survey just opened. If you're involved with the effective altruism community, or sympathetic to its ideas, it's would be wonderful if you could fill it out:https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/EAS80K2 According to Ben, we can think of the effective altruism movement as having gone through several stages, categorised by what kind of resource has been most able to unlock more progress on important issues (i.e. by what's the 'bottleneck'). Plausibly, these stages are common for other social movements as well. • Needing money: In the first stage, when effective altruism was just getting going, more money (to do things like pay staff and put on events) was the main bottleneck to making progress....

85 min1 w ago
Comments
Benjamin Todd on what the effective altruism community most needs (80k team chat #4)

#87 – Russ Roberts on whether it's more effective to help strangers, or people you know

If you want to make the world a better place, would it be better to help your niece with her SATs, or try to join the State Department to lower the risk that the US and China go to war? People involved in 80,000 Hours or the effective altruism community would be comfortable recommending the latter. This week's guest — Russ Roberts, host of the long-running podcast EconTalk, and author of a forthcoming book on decision-making under uncertainty and the limited ability of data to help — worries that might be a mistake. Links to learn more, summary and full transcript. I've been a big fan of Russ' show EconTalk for 12 years — in fact I have a list of my top 100 recommended episodes — so I invited him to talk about his concerns with how the effective altruism community tries to improve the world. These include: • Being too focused on the measurable • Being too confident we've figured out 'the best thing' • Being too credulous about the results of social science or medical experime...

109 min2 w ago
Comments
#87 – Russ Roberts on whether it's more effective to help strangers, or people you know

How much does a vote matter? (Article)

Today’s release is the latest in our series of audio versions of our articles. In this one — How much does a vote matter? — I investigate the two key things that determine the impact of your vote: • The chances of your vote changing an election’s outcome • How much better some candidates are for the world as a whole, compared to others I then discuss what I think are the best arguments against voting in important elections: • If an election is competitive, that means other people disagree about which option is better, and you’re at some risk of voting for the worse candidate by mistake. • While voting itself doesn’t take long, knowing enough to accurately pick which candidate is better for the world actually does take substantial effort — effort that could be better allocated elsewhere. Finally, I look into the impact of donating to campaigns or working to ‘get out the vote’, which can be effective ways to generate additional votes for your preferred candidate. If you w...

31 min3 w ago
Comments
How much does a vote matter? (Article)

#86 – Hilary Greaves on Pascal's mugging, strong longtermism, and whether existing can be good for us

Had World War 1 never happened, you might never have existed. It’s very unlikely that the exact chain of events that led to your conception would have happened otherwise — so perhaps you wouldn't have been born. Would that mean that it's better for you that World War 1 happened (regardless of whether it was better for the world overall)? On the one hand, if you're living a pretty good life, you might think the answer is yes – you get to live rather than not. On the other hand, it sounds strange to say that it's better for you to be alive, because if you'd never existed there'd be no you to be worse off. But if you wouldn't be worse off if you hadn't existed, can you be better off because you do? In this episode, philosophy professor Hilary Greaves – Director of Oxford University’s Global Priorities Institute – helps untangle this puzzle for us and walks me and Rob through the space of possible answers. She argues that philosophers have been too quick to conclude what she calls...

144 minOCT 22
Comments
#86 – Hilary Greaves on Pascal's mugging, strong longtermism, and whether existing can be good for us

Benjamin Todd on the core of effective altruism and how to argue for it (80k team chat #3)

Today’s episode is the latest conversation between Arden Koehler, and our CEO, Ben Todd. Ben’s been thinking a lot about effective altruism recently, including what it really is, how it's framed, and how people misunderstand it. We recently released an article on misconceptions about effective altruism – based on Will MacAskill’s recent paper The Definition of Effective Altruism – and this episode can act as a companion piece. Links to learn more, summary and full transcript. Arden and Ben cover a bunch of topics related to effective altruism: • How it isn’t just about donating money to fight poverty • Whether it includes a moral obligation to give • The rigorous argument for its importance • Objections to that argument • How to talk about effective altruism for people who aren't already familiar with it Given that we’re in the same office, it’s relatively easy to record conversations between two 80k team members — so if you enjoy these types of bonus episodes, let us ...

84 minSEP 23
Comments
Benjamin Todd on the core of effective altruism and how to argue for it (80k team chat #3)

Ideas for high impact careers beyond our priority paths (Article)

Today’s release is the latest in our series of audio versions of our articles. In this one, we go through some more career options beyond our priority paths that seem promising to us for positively influencing the long-term future. Some of these are likely to be written up as priority paths in the future, or wrapped into existing ones, but we haven’t written full profiles for them yet—for example policy careers outside AI and biosecurity policy that seem promising from a longtermist perspective. Others, like information security, we think might be as promising for many people as our priority paths, but because we haven’t investigated them much we’re still unsure. Still others seem like they’ll typically be less impactful than our priority paths for people who can succeed equally in either, but still seem high-impact to us and like they could be top options for a substantial number of people, depending on personal fit—for example research management. Finally some—like becomin...

27 minSEP 7
Comments
Ideas for high impact careers beyond our priority paths (Article)

Benjamin Todd on varieties of longtermism and things 80,000 Hours might be getting wrong (80k team chat #2)

Today’s bonus episode is a conversation between Arden Koehler, and our CEO, Ben Todd. Ben’s been doing a bunch of research recently, and we thought it’d be interesting to hear about how he’s currently thinking about a couple of different topics – including different types of longtermism, and things 80,000 Hours might be getting wrong. Links to learn more, summary and full transcript. This is very off-the-cut compared to our regular episodes, and just 54 minutes long. In the first half, Arden and Ben talk about varieties of longtermism: • Patient longtermism • Broad urgent longtermism • Targeted urgent longtermism focused on existential risks • Targeted urgent longtermism focused on other trajectory changes • And their distinctive implications for people trying to do good with their careers. In the second half, they move on to: • How to trade-off transferable versus specialist career capital • How much weight to put on personal fit • Whether we might be highlighting the ...

57 minSEP 1
Comments
Benjamin Todd on varieties of longtermism and things 80,000 Hours might be getting wrong (80k team chat #2)

Global issues beyond 80,000 Hours’ current priorities (Article)

Today’s release is the latest in our series of audio versions of our articles. In this one, we go through 30 global issues beyond the ones we usually prioritize most highly in our work, and that you might consider focusing your career on tackling. Although we spend the majority of our time at 80,000 Hours on our highest priority problem areas, and we recommend working on them to many of our readers, these are just the most promising issues among those we’ve spent time investigating. There are many other global issues that we haven’t properly investigated, and which might be very promising for more people to work on. In fact, we think working on some of the issues in this article could be as high-impact for some people as working on our priority problem areas — though we haven’t looked into them enough to be confident. If you want to check out the links in today’s article, you can find those here. Our annual user survey is also now open for submissions. Once a year for two week...

32 minAUG 29
Comments
Global issues beyond 80,000 Hours’ current priorities (Article)

#85 - Mark Lynas on climate change, societal collapse & nuclear energy

A golf-ball sized lump of uranium can deliver more than enough power to cover all of your lifetime energy use. To get the same energy from coal, you’d need 3,200 tonnes of black rock — a mass equivalent to 800 adult elephants, which would produce more than 11,000 tonnes of CO2. That’s about 11,000 tonnes more than the uranium. Many people aren’t comfortable with the danger posed by nuclear power. But given the climatic stakes, it’s worth asking: Just how much more dangerous is it compared to fossil fuels? According to today’s guest, Mark Lynas — author of Six Degrees: Our Future on a Hotter Planet (winner of the prestigious Royal Society Prizes for Science Books) and Nuclear 2.0— it’s actually much, much safer. Links to learn more, summary and full transcript. Climatologists James Hansen and Pushker Kharecha calculated that the use of nuclear power between 1971 and 2009 avoided the premature deaths of 1.84 million people by avoiding air pollution from burning coal. What abo...

128 minAUG 21
Comments
#85 - Mark Lynas on climate change, societal collapse & nuclear energy

#84 - Shruti Rajagopalan on what India did to stop COVID-19 and how well it worked

When COVID-19 struck the US, everyone was told that hand sanitizer needed to be saved for healthcare professionals, so they should just wash their hands instead. But in India, many homes lack reliable piped water, so they had to do the opposite: distribute hand sanitizer as widely as possible. American advocates for banning single-use plastic straws might be outraged at the widespread adoption of single-use hand sanitizer sachets in India. But the US and India are very different places, and it might be the only way out when you're facing a pandemic without running water. According to today’s guest, Shruti Rajagopalan, Senior Research Fellow at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University, that's typical and context is key to policy-making. This prompted Shruti to propose a set of policy responses designed for India specifically back in April. Unfortunately she thinks it's surprisingly hard to know what one should and shouldn't imitate from overseas. Links to learn more, summary a...

178 minAUG 14
Comments
#84 - Shruti Rajagopalan on what India did to stop COVID-19 and how well it worked

Latest Episodes

Benjamin Todd on what the effective altruism community most needs (80k team chat #4)

In the last '80k team chat' with Ben Todd and Arden Koehler, we discussed what effective altruism is and isn't, and how to argue for it. In this episode we turn now to what the effective altruism community most needs. • Links to learn more, summary and full transcript • The 2020 Effective Altruism Survey just opened. If you're involved with the effective altruism community, or sympathetic to its ideas, it's would be wonderful if you could fill it out:https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/EAS80K2 According to Ben, we can think of the effective altruism movement as having gone through several stages, categorised by what kind of resource has been most able to unlock more progress on important issues (i.e. by what's the 'bottleneck'). Plausibly, these stages are common for other social movements as well. • Needing money: In the first stage, when effective altruism was just getting going, more money (to do things like pay staff and put on events) was the main bottleneck to making progress....

85 min1 w ago
Comments
Benjamin Todd on what the effective altruism community most needs (80k team chat #4)

#87 – Russ Roberts on whether it's more effective to help strangers, or people you know

If you want to make the world a better place, would it be better to help your niece with her SATs, or try to join the State Department to lower the risk that the US and China go to war? People involved in 80,000 Hours or the effective altruism community would be comfortable recommending the latter. This week's guest — Russ Roberts, host of the long-running podcast EconTalk, and author of a forthcoming book on decision-making under uncertainty and the limited ability of data to help — worries that might be a mistake. Links to learn more, summary and full transcript. I've been a big fan of Russ' show EconTalk for 12 years — in fact I have a list of my top 100 recommended episodes — so I invited him to talk about his concerns with how the effective altruism community tries to improve the world. These include: • Being too focused on the measurable • Being too confident we've figured out 'the best thing' • Being too credulous about the results of social science or medical experime...

109 min2 w ago
Comments
#87 – Russ Roberts on whether it's more effective to help strangers, or people you know

How much does a vote matter? (Article)

Today’s release is the latest in our series of audio versions of our articles. In this one — How much does a vote matter? — I investigate the two key things that determine the impact of your vote: • The chances of your vote changing an election’s outcome • How much better some candidates are for the world as a whole, compared to others I then discuss what I think are the best arguments against voting in important elections: • If an election is competitive, that means other people disagree about which option is better, and you’re at some risk of voting for the worse candidate by mistake. • While voting itself doesn’t take long, knowing enough to accurately pick which candidate is better for the world actually does take substantial effort — effort that could be better allocated elsewhere. Finally, I look into the impact of donating to campaigns or working to ‘get out the vote’, which can be effective ways to generate additional votes for your preferred candidate. If you w...

31 min3 w ago
Comments
How much does a vote matter? (Article)

#86 – Hilary Greaves on Pascal's mugging, strong longtermism, and whether existing can be good for us

Had World War 1 never happened, you might never have existed. It’s very unlikely that the exact chain of events that led to your conception would have happened otherwise — so perhaps you wouldn't have been born. Would that mean that it's better for you that World War 1 happened (regardless of whether it was better for the world overall)? On the one hand, if you're living a pretty good life, you might think the answer is yes – you get to live rather than not. On the other hand, it sounds strange to say that it's better for you to be alive, because if you'd never existed there'd be no you to be worse off. But if you wouldn't be worse off if you hadn't existed, can you be better off because you do? In this episode, philosophy professor Hilary Greaves – Director of Oxford University’s Global Priorities Institute – helps untangle this puzzle for us and walks me and Rob through the space of possible answers. She argues that philosophers have been too quick to conclude what she calls...

144 minOCT 22
Comments
#86 – Hilary Greaves on Pascal's mugging, strong longtermism, and whether existing can be good for us

Benjamin Todd on the core of effective altruism and how to argue for it (80k team chat #3)

Today’s episode is the latest conversation between Arden Koehler, and our CEO, Ben Todd. Ben’s been thinking a lot about effective altruism recently, including what it really is, how it's framed, and how people misunderstand it. We recently released an article on misconceptions about effective altruism – based on Will MacAskill’s recent paper The Definition of Effective Altruism – and this episode can act as a companion piece. Links to learn more, summary and full transcript. Arden and Ben cover a bunch of topics related to effective altruism: • How it isn’t just about donating money to fight poverty • Whether it includes a moral obligation to give • The rigorous argument for its importance • Objections to that argument • How to talk about effective altruism for people who aren't already familiar with it Given that we’re in the same office, it’s relatively easy to record conversations between two 80k team members — so if you enjoy these types of bonus episodes, let us ...

84 minSEP 23
Comments
Benjamin Todd on the core of effective altruism and how to argue for it (80k team chat #3)

Ideas for high impact careers beyond our priority paths (Article)

Today’s release is the latest in our series of audio versions of our articles. In this one, we go through some more career options beyond our priority paths that seem promising to us for positively influencing the long-term future. Some of these are likely to be written up as priority paths in the future, or wrapped into existing ones, but we haven’t written full profiles for them yet—for example policy careers outside AI and biosecurity policy that seem promising from a longtermist perspective. Others, like information security, we think might be as promising for many people as our priority paths, but because we haven’t investigated them much we’re still unsure. Still others seem like they’ll typically be less impactful than our priority paths for people who can succeed equally in either, but still seem high-impact to us and like they could be top options for a substantial number of people, depending on personal fit—for example research management. Finally some—like becomin...

27 minSEP 7
Comments
Ideas for high impact careers beyond our priority paths (Article)

Benjamin Todd on varieties of longtermism and things 80,000 Hours might be getting wrong (80k team chat #2)

Today’s bonus episode is a conversation between Arden Koehler, and our CEO, Ben Todd. Ben’s been doing a bunch of research recently, and we thought it’d be interesting to hear about how he’s currently thinking about a couple of different topics – including different types of longtermism, and things 80,000 Hours might be getting wrong. Links to learn more, summary and full transcript. This is very off-the-cut compared to our regular episodes, and just 54 minutes long. In the first half, Arden and Ben talk about varieties of longtermism: • Patient longtermism • Broad urgent longtermism • Targeted urgent longtermism focused on existential risks • Targeted urgent longtermism focused on other trajectory changes • And their distinctive implications for people trying to do good with their careers. In the second half, they move on to: • How to trade-off transferable versus specialist career capital • How much weight to put on personal fit • Whether we might be highlighting the ...

57 minSEP 1
Comments
Benjamin Todd on varieties of longtermism and things 80,000 Hours might be getting wrong (80k team chat #2)

Global issues beyond 80,000 Hours’ current priorities (Article)

Today’s release is the latest in our series of audio versions of our articles. In this one, we go through 30 global issues beyond the ones we usually prioritize most highly in our work, and that you might consider focusing your career on tackling. Although we spend the majority of our time at 80,000 Hours on our highest priority problem areas, and we recommend working on them to many of our readers, these are just the most promising issues among those we’ve spent time investigating. There are many other global issues that we haven’t properly investigated, and which might be very promising for more people to work on. In fact, we think working on some of the issues in this article could be as high-impact for some people as working on our priority problem areas — though we haven’t looked into them enough to be confident. If you want to check out the links in today’s article, you can find those here. Our annual user survey is also now open for submissions. Once a year for two week...

32 minAUG 29
Comments
Global issues beyond 80,000 Hours’ current priorities (Article)

#85 - Mark Lynas on climate change, societal collapse & nuclear energy

A golf-ball sized lump of uranium can deliver more than enough power to cover all of your lifetime energy use. To get the same energy from coal, you’d need 3,200 tonnes of black rock — a mass equivalent to 800 adult elephants, which would produce more than 11,000 tonnes of CO2. That’s about 11,000 tonnes more than the uranium. Many people aren’t comfortable with the danger posed by nuclear power. But given the climatic stakes, it’s worth asking: Just how much more dangerous is it compared to fossil fuels? According to today’s guest, Mark Lynas — author of Six Degrees: Our Future on a Hotter Planet (winner of the prestigious Royal Society Prizes for Science Books) and Nuclear 2.0— it’s actually much, much safer. Links to learn more, summary and full transcript. Climatologists James Hansen and Pushker Kharecha calculated that the use of nuclear power between 1971 and 2009 avoided the premature deaths of 1.84 million people by avoiding air pollution from burning coal. What abo...

128 minAUG 21
Comments
#85 - Mark Lynas on climate change, societal collapse & nuclear energy

#84 - Shruti Rajagopalan on what India did to stop COVID-19 and how well it worked

When COVID-19 struck the US, everyone was told that hand sanitizer needed to be saved for healthcare professionals, so they should just wash their hands instead. But in India, many homes lack reliable piped water, so they had to do the opposite: distribute hand sanitizer as widely as possible. American advocates for banning single-use plastic straws might be outraged at the widespread adoption of single-use hand sanitizer sachets in India. But the US and India are very different places, and it might be the only way out when you're facing a pandemic without running water. According to today’s guest, Shruti Rajagopalan, Senior Research Fellow at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University, that's typical and context is key to policy-making. This prompted Shruti to propose a set of policy responses designed for India specifically back in April. Unfortunately she thinks it's surprisingly hard to know what one should and shouldn't imitate from overseas. Links to learn more, summary a...

178 minAUG 14
Comments
#84 - Shruti Rajagopalan on what India did to stop COVID-19 and how well it worked
success toast
Welcome to Himalaya LearningClick below to download our app for better listening experience.Download App