What is effective altruism?
We all want to do something good for others, but making the world a better place is not easy. How do you know whether an idea works in practice and in the long run? And what works best? To know that, you need to investigate what your options are and what those options can bring about. That’s the core of effective altruism. Effective altruism is about the application of reason and evidence to use our resources as effectively as possible for the benefit of the planet and people around us.
EAN endorses the principles of effective altruism according to the Center for Effective Altruism in Oxford.
What does EAN do?
Effective Altruism Netherlands (EAN) was founded as a charitable organization in January 2017. Its mission is to encourage people and organizations to do as much good as possible.
People who want to do good as effectively as possible often lack a network of like-minded people to work together with. EAN is building the network for and of effective altruists in the Netherlands to solve that. The majority of our communication and events is in English, and internationals are more than welcome to join fellow effective altruists in the Netherlands through EAN.
EAN is a catalyst, connector and point of contact. We help effective altruists build their networks with specific goals; connect people with those networks and with each other; and we ensure good and nuanced communication about effective altruism in the Netherlands.
We are a transparant organization. In this light, you can find our records below:
Read more about the importance of the work of organizations such as EAN here.
Stay up-to-date about our activities and how you can take part by subscribing to our newsletter.
Networks EAN Collaborates with
Effective Giving is a community of funds and philanthropists who together learn how to use their resources to contribute maximally to a better world.
EAN en Effective Giving work together on sharing knowledge on making effective donations by, for example, publishing articles and making recommended international charities tax deductible.
Alje from Talent2Gather offers workshops during which students learn to apply effective altruism to their careers. How can your choices lead to an interesting, satisfying career that maximally contributes to a better world? The workshops are based on the thorough research of 80,000 Hours in Oxford.
EAN connects academic institutions and student societies with Talent2Gather to enable more students to have a meaningful, impactful career. Please contact us if you are interested.
Road to AI Safety Excellence (RAISE)
RAISE is working on an online course on developing artificial intelligence that is safe and beneficial to the world. See this wiki for an overview, ask your questions in the Facebook group, and fill in this form if you want to contribute.
EAN shares management advice and connections with RAISE.
AI Safety Camp
AI safety research camps are coworking events where aspiring artificial intelligence alignment researchers can collaborate on topics and develop skills. They are organised twice a year by local groups in Europe following a promising first edition in Gran Canaria coordinated by EAN. See the Facebook group for the latest updates.
EAN helps form capable, well-informed teams to organise each new edition of the AI Safety Camp.
Who are we?
EAN is a new foundation with a board of three, a fulltime workforce of two and a few dozen volunteers. We are advised by international organizations in the field of effective altruism and Dutch experts in the philanthropic and academic sector. Our donors so far include Triodos Foundation, Jazi Foundation, and Spiritual Innovation Fund. In addition, we are supported by a growing group of private donors.
+ Takes care of outreach, gives keynotes and lectures and develops EAN’s strategy
+ Studied quantum physics and philosophy at Utrecht University College and econometrics in Tilburg
About Effective Altruism:
“I encountered EA whilst researching happiness economics during my master. The positive feedback between happiness and altruism fascinates me, and it’s how I found out about EA. To me, EA means combining the heart and the head: transforming the motivation you feel in your heart into concrete action by using the head.
Favourite Netflix series?
Last book you read?
“Verslaafd aan denken by Jan Geurtz.”
Take away point?
“Some things appear contradictory but do not have to be: like taking action and doubt, pragmatism and idealism. Doing good for others and for yourself go hand in hand.”
+ Organises the monthly Community Events and works behind the scenes: treasurer, RAISE and other EA projects
+ Writing his thesis for the National Research Institute for Mathematics and Computer Science in Amsterdam
How did you find out about Effective Altruism?
“My search history tells me I watched Peter Singer’s TED talk in 2013. I joined meetups and founded EA Groningen. I am very interested in linking different people and projects, that want to do good in one way or another. There are many ways to make the world just a little bit better: EA makes the most difference in the lives of others.”
Where do you spend a lot of your time?
What is your favourite documentary?
“Guns, Germs and Steel”
What is your advice to new EA’ers?
“Lots of people who want to do good effectively, appear to want to take action immediately. I would like to encourage them to take a couple months and research EA and cause areas before choosing your path.”
From January to June 2017, EAN supported effective altruist projects. Those are summarized here.
On May 28, 2017, EAN launched its activities with a large event in Utrecht. Philosopher Peter Singer gave an introductory lecture on effective altruism, and people working in a variety of sectors came together to discuss how they could do good more effectively.
Since July 2017, EAN has a new strategy: we are building the network for effective altruism in the Netherlands.
To help us cover the costs of outreach, national events and promising new projects, you can make a donation. We strive to be transparent about what we do and incorporate useful feedback from donors in our decision-making.
You can donate via
2. a bank transfer to NL48 TRIO 0338 5113 26, with name Stg Effectief Altruïsme.
Thank you for your support! We are doing our very best to make your donation as impactful as possible.
If you have any questions, please contact Sjir Hoeijmakers via firstname.lastname@example.org.
EAN has ANBI status at the Dutch tax office, so donations are deductible from income tax under certain conditions.
Local groups and online discussion
Effective altruism is relatively new in the Netherlands, but the movement is growing quickly. There are already seven groups that organize events, from social meetups to informative lectures. These groups are a good place to learn more about effective altruism, meet other effective altruists and exchange ideas.
The local groups are independent of Effective Altruism Netherlands (EAN). EAN supports the local groups insofar that contributes to EAN’s mission.
Next to the local groups you can also get in touch with other effective altruists online, for example via the Facebook group of Effective Altruism Netherlands. Members often share articles or have interesting discussions about various topics related to effective altruism.