Funding Proposal: Supporting a Campaign to Increase Canadian Official Development Assistance

Value Es­ti­mate/​Fund­ing Pro­posal for Cana­dian ODA Campaign

Bel­low I lay out the case for a pro­ject that I be­lieve may have a higher ex­pected value then donat­ing to GiveWell char­i­ties.

There are a num­ber of points that I still feel un­cer­tainty about, but I thought I would err on the side of get­ting feed­back early. Let me know what you think!


The Cana­dian Coun­cil for In­ter­na­tional Co­op­er­a­tion (CCIC) is an or­ga­ni­za­tion that brings to­gether Cana­dian non-prof­its fo­cused on in­ter­na­tional de­vel­op­ment. At their con­fer­ence in Oc­to­ber in 2017, they pre­sented a pitch for their (as of then not-pub­lic) cam­paign to at­tempt to get Canada to hon­our their com­mit­ment to give 0.7% of their Gross Na­tional In­come (GNI) to Offi­cial Devel­op­ment As­sis­tance (ODA). If suc­cess­ful, this would rep­re­sent an in­crease of ap­prox­i­mately 9 Billion Cana­dian Dol­lars (CAD) per year to Canada’s ODA bud­get. [1] The cam­paign struck me as par­tic­u­larly com­pel­ling and well-re­searched, the con­sul­tants the CCIC em­ployed to de­velop it seemed ex­tremely knowl­edge­able. In ad­di­tion, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foun­da­tion, which funded the cam­paign’s cre­ation, have re­newed their fund­ing to hire a new cam­paign man­ager. After re­view­ing the cam­paign in more de­tail, I have be­come con­vinced it would be worth di­rect­ing EA funds to­ward this ini­ti­a­tive.

My pro­posal is to de­velop and run an ad­di­tional cam­paign office, com­prised of four mem­bers of the Effec­tive Altru­ist com­mu­nity (my­self in­cluded) to provide sup­port to the CCIC cam­paign. I be­lieve bring­ing Effec­tive Altru­ists to­gether for this pro­ject will have ad­di­tional benefits be­yond this cam­paign. I note these at the end of the post. That said, the main fo­cus of this post will be the ex­pected value of the pro­ject it­self.

Ex­pected Value Calcu­la­tion for this Project

My calcu­la­tion of the ex­pected value for this pro­ject has three vari­ables.

  1. The Coun­ter­fac­tual-Ad­justed In­crease in ODA if the 0.7% cam­paign is suc­cess­ful

  2. How much more likely is it for the cam­paign to be suc­cess­ful if 4 EAs work on it full time

  3. The Dis­count Rate be­tween Cana­dian ODA and Equiv­a­lent money to GiveWell Charities

I provide de­tails for each of these vari­ables be­low. I in­clude the num­ber I think is most plau­si­ble for each, as well as my 90% Con­fi­dence In­ter­val for each (that is to say, the range of es­ti­mates which I be­lieve cap­tures 90% of the prob­a­bil­ity space). If you want to gen­er­ate your own ex­pected value for the pro­gram us­ing these vari­ables, feel free to in­put your own es­ti­mates into this spread­sheet.

1. What is the Coun­ter­fac­tual Ad­justed In­crease in ODA if the 0.7 cam­paign is suc­cess­ful?

To calcu­late the to­tal amount of in­creased ODA at­tributable to the cam­paign, we need to think about how much longer we would ex­pect to wait for the ODA in­crease to hap­pen if the cam­paign wasn’t suc­cess­ful.[2]

The short­est time we could ex­pect would be 1 year, since gov­ern­ment bud­gets are yearly. Given that a sub­stan­tial in­crease to the aid bud­get is likely to only be an­nounced dur­ing elec­tion years (or more pre­cisely, the half-year lead­ing up to an elec­tion), I think the yearly prob­a­bil­ity will be un­evenly weighted in favour of elec­tion years. We can also calcu­late the back­ground prob­a­bil­ity of an in­crease get­ting adopted dur­ing any given elec­tion cy­cle. Given the pol­ling done on the is­sue (refer­enced in the re­port), I think there is a 20% chance that it will be adopted by a party dur­ing any given elec­tion cy­cle from now on in the ab­sence of in­fluence from a cam­paign of this kind. [3]

If we go solely on the baseline of 20% chance per 5 year elec­tion cy­cle, we should ex­pect the coun­ter­fac­tual im­pact to be some­where in the range of speed­ing im­ple­men­ta­tion up by 25 years. That said, this does not cap­ture the pos­si­bil­ity of the pro­gram be­ing im­ple­mented be­tween elec­tion years, and if we think the prob­a­bil­ity per non-elec­tion year is 5%, then we get about 10 years coun­ter­fac­tu­ally.

Given these con­sid­er­a­tions, I would say 10 years is a good es­ti­mate. My 90% con­fi­dence in­ter­val would be be­tween 1 year and 30 years.

Through­out each step in this post I am go­ing to note the num­ber I find most plau­si­ble at the end of each sec­tion. As I noted be­fore, you can in­put your own es­ti­mates for each of these num­bers us­ing this spread­sheet.

So 10 years, at 9 billion CAD per year, is 90 billion CAD.

Another con­sid­er­a­tion is how likely it is for the bud­get in­crease to be re­pealed. This is also a hard one to rea­son about in the ab­stract- there are only a few other con­crete ex­am­ples of other OECD coun­tries in­creas­ing their spend­ing to reach the 0.7 ODA tar­get agreed to by the UN. The most analo­gous case I think is that of the UK, and it has up­dated me to­ward the view that once it is agreed to, there is a good chance that there will be co­op­er­a­tion amongst par­ties to keep it in place. To err on the side of con­ser­vatism I will say there is a 50% chance that the bud­get in­crease will be can­celed, even in the case where the cam­paign is suc­cess­ful. We can take the ad­di­tional con­ser­va­tive (and sim­plify­ing) as­sump­tion that we can ig­nore what­ever in­crease in spend­ing would have taken place be­fore the pro­gram was can­celed. So we re­duce the 90 billion figure by 50% and get:

45 billion CAD in in­creased ODA payments

2. How should we ex­pect 4 EAs work­ing on the Cam­paign full time to effect its prob­a­bil­ity of suc­cess?

Like all of these vari­ables, I find this a very difficult one to rea­son about. I as­sume that the CCIC and the Gates Foun­da­tion would only in­vest the re­sources (per­son­nel and money) if they thought there was at least a no­tice­able chance that the cam­paign would suc­ceed (they could of course be wrong in this). I be­lieve that their be­lief here counts for some­thing, but I am also cog­nizant of the fact that most cam­paigns fail, and so my calcu­la­tions for how much we can make a differ­ence here will be based on some healthy skep­ti­cism.

One of the de­tails of the cur­rent cam­paign that makes me con­fi­dent that EAs can have a dis­pro­por­tionate im­pact by sup­port­ing it, is the fact that CCIC is cur­rently ex­tremely time con­strained in terms of peo­ple to run the cam­paign. The pre­vi­ous cam­paign-man­ager’s con­tract has ended, and it has fallen on the cur­rent com­mu­ni­ca­tions officer to run the cam­paign (and they are only able to al­lo­cate about a third of their per­son-hours on the pro­ject). CCIC is hiring for a new role, and one of their re­spon­si­bil­ities will be to help run the cam­paign (but this will rep­re­sent only 50% of their time). Mean­while CCIC has done a sig­nifi­cant amount of work set­ting up the in­fras­truc­ture for this cam­paign (fol­low­ing from the ad­vice from the con­sul­tants) and they have got­ten buy-in from their mem­bers. CCIC’s mem­ber or­ga­ni­za­tions, which in­clude the likes of Ox­fam, Save the Chil­dren, and World Vi­sion, have a post­code-mailing list of 1.3 Million Cana­di­ans. In other words, 1 in 30 Cana­di­ans have signed up for con­tact from one of these or­gani­sa­tions. Th­ese or­gani­sa­tions sig­nifi­cant reach, and their thou­sands of vol­un­teers, are an in­cred­ible re­source, that likely won’t be fully uti­lized with­out co­or­di­na­tion. Given their cur­rent plans, CCIC will only have 0.5 to 0.8 Full-Time Equiv­a­lent hours (be­tween two staff mem­bers) work­ing on the cam­paign (0.5 of which will be a new hire that they are still con­duct­ing the hiring round for). I don’t be­lieve this will be suffi­cient to fully tap into this net­work. If you want to know more about what pro­jects the EA staff would be work­ing on, you can see my cur­rent best-guess here.

So with that con­text in mind, what effect would we ex­pect 4 ad­di­tional full-time EAs to have on the cam­paign? Here I am go­ing to err on the side of be­ing non-con­ser­va­tive, and say that a well run cam­paign by a cen­trally lo­cated or­gani­sa­tion, with pre-ex­ist­ing ac­cess to policy mak­ers, poli­ti­ci­ans and al­igned NGOs, can ex­ert a no­tice­able differ­ence on the chances of a policy like this com­ing about. Fur­ther­more, given the cur­rent staffing situ­a­tion, I be­lieve an in­jec­tion of 4, highly mo­ti­vated, strate­gi­cally in­clined, par­allel staff, will sub­stan­tially im­prove the prospects of this cam­paign. I have a 90% Con­fi­dence In­ter­val that 4 EAs could in­crease the prob­a­bil­ity of suc­cess by some­where be­tween a one in ten thou­sand (0.0001) chance to a one in a hun­dred (0.01) chance. I will land on the log­a­r­ith­mic mid­dle re­sult: that it will in­crease the chances of the policy be­ing adopted by one in a thou­sand (0.001).

45 billion CAD in in­creased ODA pay­ments x 0.001 (in­crease chance of suc­cess from EA in­volve­ment) = 45 Million CAD

3. The Dis­count Rate be­tween Cana­dian ODA and Equiv­a­lent money to GiveWell Charities

Next we need to com­pare the value of 1$ go­ing to Cana­dian ODA to 1$ to an av­er­age GiveWell Char­ity (if we are us­ing EA funds, and EA tal­ent, fo­cused on Global Poverty causes, this is the rele­vant op­por­tu­nity cost).

The first thing to note is that even un­der op­ti­mistic timelines, the in­crease in ODA spend­ing to its full amount (0.7 GNI) will take 5-10 years, and so if we are op­ti­mistic that gov­ern­ments will con­tinue to im­prove in their ODA al­lo­ca­tion de­ci­sions, we can ex­pect the ra­tio from ODA to GiveWell to be more fa­vor­able in the fu­ture than it is now.

That said, I am some­what pes­simistic that things will im­prove too dra­mat­i­cally in the next 5-10 years, and I am also fairly pes­simistic about the av­er­age qual­ity of ODA spend­ing. I would say that, on av­er­age, ODA fund­ing is around 5% as effec­tive as av­er­age GiveWell dona­tions. My rea­son­ing for set­ting it as 5% is that roughly 15% of the bud­get is already spent on ev­i­dence based health in­ter­ven­tions, many of which over­lap with the in­ter­ven­tions pur­sued by GiveWell Char­i­ties (This in­cludes 800 Million to the Fight Aids, Malaria and TB fund). That said, it is un­clear, from my shal­low in­ves­ti­ga­tion, what per­centage of this bud­get al­lo­ca­tion funds the in­ter­ven­tions fa­vored by GiveWell char­i­ties. Fur­ther­more, the vast ma­jor­ity of ODA does not go to these pub­lic-health in­ter­ven­tions, and given the core EA ob­ser­va­tion that most of the effect comes from the tail, miss­ing these in­ter­ven­tions could be akin to giv­ing up al­most all of the im­pact. So if we as­sume ODA spend­ing is about a third as effec­tive in these ar­eas (be­cause most is be­ing spent on non-top in­ter­ven­tions in those ar­eas) [op­ti­mistic], and we as­sume that all non-health aid has no effect [pes­simistic], then we ar­rive at 5%. As I do a more in depth anal­y­sis of Global Af­fairs ODA spend­ing for my PhD dis­ser­ta­tion, I will be able to give a more thor­ough break­down, but for now this is my best (ex­tremely rough) guess of what the ra­tio should be.

45 Million CAD in ODA x 0.05 (GiveWell:CAD ODA Ra­tio) =
2.25 Million CAD in GiveWell Dona­tion Ad­justed Value

If the cost of hiring 4 EAs to im­prove the cam­paign is 125,000 CAD (see be­low), this would rep­re­sent a 18x mul­ti­plier com­pared to the same money go­ing to GiveWell char­i­ties. It would lead to a net 2.1 Million Cana­dian Dol­lars in GiveWell-Dona­tion-Ad­justed Value be­ing gen­er­ated.

Th­ese num­bers change slightly based on the op­por­tu­nity costs of the peo­ple in­volved, and the effects it has on their ca­reer tra­jec­tory, but I think in most plau­si­ble sce­nar­ios the ab­solute amount, and the ra­tio, still seem very promis­ing. I dis­cuss this point fur­ther in the fi­nal sec­tion.

Rough Budget

This rep­re­sents the top-end of what I think would be worth fund­ing for this pro­ject. Depend­ing on the com­mu­ni­ties in­ter­est in the pro­ject, and availa­bil­ity of fund­ing, we could run on a re­duced bud­get.

The fund­ing pro­vided would be for 4 EAs (my­self and 3 ad­di­tional EAs) to work on the pro­ject full time from late Fe­bru­ary to the mid­dle of Novem­ber (The Cana­dian Elec­tion is late Oc­to­ber).

Stan­dard Bud­get:

  • 3 EAs on 9 month con­tracts, pay­ing 3500 CAD/​month, for a to­tal of $94,500 CAD

  • For Me: A TA buy­out for Sum­mer (4 months), at 1500/​Month, and the above con­tract for the fi­nal three months (3500/​month) for $16,500 CAD.

  • In ad­di­tion I would set $1000 for con­sul­tant fees (to work with the con­sul­tants who de­signed the cam­paign) and le­gal fees (to in­sure that all strate­gies that are adopted by the cam­paign fol­low the le­gal pa­ram­e­ters for char­i­ties in­volve­ment in poli­ti­cal ac­tion).

  • I will also bud­get $1250 CAD per month for an office down­town, close to the CCIC offices and Par­li­a­ment Hill x 9 months = $11,250 CAD.

  • To­tal cost= 123,250 CAD

The three hires will ideally be able to move to Ot­tawa, but I will also hap­pily con­sider in­di­vi­d­u­als who would pre­fer to work re­motely.

Re­duced bud­get [2 staff, no office]:

  • 1 EA on 9 month con­tracts, pay­ing 3500 CAD/​month, for a to­tal of $31,500 CAD

  • For Me: A TA buy­out for Sum­mer (4 months), at 1500/​Month, and the above con­tract for the fi­nal three months (3500/​month) for $16,500 CAD.

  • In ad­di­tion I would set 1000$ for con­sul­tant fees (to work with the con­sul­tants who de­signed the cam­paign) and le­gal fees (to in­sure that all strate­gies that are adopted by the cam­paign fol­low the le­gal pa­ram­e­ters for char­i­ties in­volve­ment in poli­ti­cal ac­tion).

  • <re­mote work: no office>

  • To­tal cost= 49,000 CAD

I am un­sure how to calcu­late the rel­a­tive effec­tive­ness of the two bud­gets: If we as­sume that there is a lot of value on the mar­gin of adding ad­di­tional staff time, then since we have half the staff, we should ex­pect half of the prob­a­ble effect (re­duc­ing the ex­pected value by 1 Million CAD). On the other hand, if we ex­pect that ad­di­tional staff won’t add much marginal value, and al­most all the value is cap­tured by the team ex­ist­ing, then dou­bling staff may only im­prove base chances by, say 10%, So the lower bud­get would af­fect the prob­a­bil­ity by 0.0009 rather than 0.001, re­duc­ing ex­pected value by 200,000 CAD (and only re­duc­ing it net 120,000 CAD when con­sid­er­ing the cost of the higher bud­get).

I be­lieve there are ad­di­tional benefits to this pro­ject, be­yond it in­creas­ing the prob­a­bil­ity of the policy be­ing adopted. The first (per­haps self­ishly!) is that it will provide me with a num­ber of key con­tacts in top anti-poverty or­gani­sa­tions, as well as to MPs that I wouldn’t oth­er­wise have ac­cess to. In the case of a suc­cess­ful out­come, this could trans­late to sig­nifi­cant ca­reer cap­i­tal. In a non-suc­cess­ful but well run cam­paign, this could also be some­thing that would con­tribute to my ca­reer cap­i­tal. This would also be true of the other EAs work­ing on the pro­ject, and since I would be se­lect­ing for can­di­dates who are in­ter­ested in pur­su­ing EA policy in Canada, I sus­pect this would in­crease their life-time im­pact as well. I also be­lieve that this will have in­for­ma­tion value for EAs, as it will be a con­crete case of how cam­paigns work. Through­out the cam­paign, the team will be read­ing up on and syn­the­siz­ing the key liter­a­ture on how to run a suc­cess­ful cam­paign, and as part of our de­brief of the pro­ject, we will sum­ma­rize our main les­sons, so other EAs can learn from them, and ap­ply them to fu­ture cam­paigns. I say a bit more about these ex­ter­nal effects of the pro­ject in the fi­nal sec­tion bel­low.

[More Spec­u­la­tive] - Some More Thoughts on the Indi­rect Effects of the Project

I have fo­cused pri­mar­ily on the di­rect effects of the pro­ject. Th­ese di­rect effects might be ei­ther sig­nifi­cantly im­proved or diminished by the pro­ject’s in­di­rect effects. I will try and say some­thing in a bit more de­tail about three in­di­rect effects. My views on each of these are weakly held.

1. Op­por­tu­nity Costs

The eval­u­a­tion did not con­sider the op­por­tu­nity costs for the in­di­vi­d­u­als in­volved. Since I will be tar­get­ing EAs, there is a plau­si­ble case that the op­por­tu­nity costs for these in­di­vi­d­u­als are high. An ini­tial way to gen­er­ate the op­por­tu­nity cost could be to calcu­late the amount of money that the EAs could have donated, had they pur­sued other op­por­tu­ni­ties (such as earn­ing to give). Ob­vi­ously, if they in­di­vi­d­ual had an ex­traor­di­nary earn­ing-to-give po­ten­tial (ei­ther right now, or by skil­ling up to in­crease life­time earn­ings), then this could have a sig­nifi­cant effect on the value calcu­la­tion. For ex­am­ple, if some­one could have in­creased life­time dona­tions by 500,000 CAD by tak­ing a differ­ent course of ac­tion over the 9 months, and if the team was made up ex­clu­sively by four such in­di­vi­d­u­als, this would re­duce the coun­ter­fac­tual effect of the cam­paign to nearly zero. Clearly for most EAs, their earn­ing-to-give im­pact won’t be so sig­nifi­cant, but since EA is cur­rently far more tal­ent con­strained than fund­ing con­strained, dis­tract­ing a, for ex­am­ple, top-tier re­searcher or op­er­a­tions in­di­vi­d­ual for those 9 months, from other higher re­turn pro­jects, could have equiv­a­lently sig­nifi­cant nega­tive effects on the counter-fac­tual. To miti­gate these down­sides, I will be aiming to (1) se­lect EAs whose im­me­di­ate op­por­tu­nity costs are not ex­tremely high (i.e. they are not trad­ing this off with sig­nifi­cant skil­ling up or EtG po­ten­tial), and ideally (2) I will be tar­get­ing EAs whose ca­reer cap­i­tal will be im­proved by work­ing on this pro­ject.

Be­fore I say a bit more about ca­reer cap­i­tal, it is worth con­sid­er­ing what a rea­son­able es­ti­mate for the op­por­tu­nity cost for in­di­vi­d­u­als (ig­nor­ing ca­reer cap­i­tal) could be. My very rough guess is that 9 months of an EA’s time is worth roughly 100,000 CAD. This is a weakly held view, but I ar­rived at it by con­sid­er­ing that it is likely the av­er­age of the non-tail earn­ing-to-give amount for 9 months of in­come [I as­sume that be­ing with ex­traor­di­nary earn-to-give po­ten­tial would not ap­ply], and the view that many EAs can work to fill tal­ent gaps that the com­mu­nity val­ues at around 100,000 CAD for 9 months [Again, con­di­tional on the sort of can­di­date I would be aiming to hire]. This 100,000 CAD figure sits in the mid­dle of my 90% CI of be­tween 10k and 1 mil­lion. If we take this num­ber, then the to­tal counter-fac­tu­ally ad­justed cost for the full bud­get is raised to 524,000 CAD. This means the pro­ject (ig­nor­ing its other in­di­rect effects) would only be a 4x mul­ti­plier, and would only net 1.5 Million GiveWell-Ad­justed dol­lars. If we take the up­per bound of my CI, then this could be a coun­ter­fac­tu­ally harm­ful pro­ject. That said, since I will be ac­tively se­lect­ing for EAs who ei­ther have lower op­por­tu­nity cost, or gain use­ful ca­reer cap­i­tal from the ex­pe­rience, I do not be­lieve this nega­tive out­come is a likely one.

2. Ca­reer Capital

As I noted above, I be­lieve that this pro­ject will have benefi­cial effects on my ca­reer cap­i­tal (so long as I con­tinue to fo­cus on Cana­dian Devel­op­ment Spend­ing). The net­work offered by the CCIC is quite ex­ten­sive- it ex­tends to the ma­jor NGOs in the de­vel­op­ment space, as well as to mem­bers of Par­li­a­ment, and to the Minister re­spon­si­ble for Cana­dian ODA. In the pro­cess of driv­ing the cam­paign for­ward, the EAs work­ing on the cam­paign will have the op­por­tu­nity to in­ter­act with se­nior mem­bers of the CCIC and se­nior mem­bers in or­gani­sa­tions in their net­work (Ox­fam, Save the Chil­dren, etc.). Th­ese con­tacts will be valuable, not only in se­cur­ing fu­ture, more se­nior, roles in the in­dus­try, but also in hav­ing the po­ten­tial to get a bet­ter sense of how to get new policy en­acted in the Cana­dian con­text (and thereby how to get more EA-lean­ing poli­cies to pass). In ad­di­tion, if the cam­paign is suc­cess­ful, it will be a strong piece of work ex­pe­rience for fu­ture cam­paigns, and could there­fore trans­late into poli­ti­cal cap­i­tal for par­ti­san poli­tics. I find it difficult to put a dol­lar amount on these benefits. My guess is that if this could, for ex­am­ple, ex­e­crate the EAs work­ing on this pro­ject’s se­nior­ity, or im­prove the prob­a­bil­ity of them land­ing a more in­fluen­tial po­si­tion by a sig­nifi­cant de­gree, this would have a no­tice­able im­pact on their over­all ca­reer tra­jec­tory. If we imag­ine that an EA fo­cused on a ca­reer at­tempt­ing to im­ple­ment EA poli­cies in Cana­dian ODA, will in ex­pec­ta­tion in­fluence 10 mil­lion GiveWell Ad­justed CAD in spend­ing over their ca­reer, and this im­proves their ca­reer tra­jec­tory by 1%, then it would be worth 100,000 CAD. My CIs here are wide, and my over­all po­si­tion is weakly held, but if we think that EAs on this path can have a sig­nifi­cant im­pact, than any­thing that even has a minor effect on their ca­reer cap­i­tal, likely adds a sig­nifi­cant amount of ex­pected value to the pro­ject.

3. In­for­ma­tion Value

The fi­nal benefit of the pro­ject I will con­sider is the value of the in­for­ma­tion it pro­vides to the rest of the EA com­mu­nity. Since there have not been many EA pro­jects of this kind, what we learn from the cam­paign, and the benefits of work­ing with or­gani­sa­tions like the CCIC might in­spire other pro­jects in the fu­ture. The value of the in­for­ma­tion could come ei­ther in in­spiring other cam­paigns that oth­er­wise wouldn’t have ex­isted, or in im­prov­ing cam­paigns that would have hap­pened in ei­ther case. As I men­tioned above, one of the goals of the pro­ject will be to ac­tively read and syn­the­size de­tails on how to run an effec­tive cam­paign, and to ap­ply these to our work. We will also have an anal­y­sis at the end of the cam­paign to out­line what we learned, and what we think we could have done bet­ter, so that other fu­ture pro­jects of this kind could be im­proved. I have a very hard time calcu­lat­ing a spe­cific num­ber for what the in­for­ma­tion value of a pro­ject like this could be. If the pro­ject goes well, and it re­veals in­for­ma­tion that im­plies that other similar cam­paigns could go well, it could lead to other multi-mil­lion-dol­lar-in-ex­pec­ta­tion pro­jects to ex­ists that oth­er­wise would not ex­ist. Con­versely, if the cam­paign goes very poorly, this could serve as im­por­tant in­for­ma­tion to ei­ther help other cam­paigns do bet­ter, or de­ter other EAs from pur­su­ing this sort of pro­ject in the fu­ture. Depend­ing on the qual­ity of the in­for­ma­tion de­rived from this pro­ject, and its use by the EA com­mu­nity in the fu­ture, it is pos­si­ble that the in­for­ma­tion value of the pro­ject could ex­ceed its di­rect effect. That said since I am deeply un­cer­tain about the na­ture of these po­ten­tial fu­ture pro­jects, I am re­luc­tant to set any spe­cific dol­lar value here.


[1] The cur­rent bud­get is 0.24 GNI, so when we mul­ti­ply Canada’s cur­rent GNI by 0.46 we get ap­prox­i­mately 9 Billion CAD

[2] It’s worth not­ing that the full in­crease won’t hap­pen all at once, it will mostly likely in­crease some­thing like 15% a year un­til we reached the full 0.7 tar­get, that said, since other counter-fac­tual changes fol­low the same scale-up timeline, we can ig­nore it for sake of simplicity

[3] On the one hand, an in­crease the ODA bud­get is con­sis­tent with what Cana­di­ans tell us in polls, on the other it’s not a vote mov­ing is­sue, and has pol­led well for sev­eral decades with­out any party in­cor­po­rat­ing it into their plat­form. So 20% might be a bit op­ti­mistic, but since that re­duces the amount that can be counted as coun­ter­fac­tual im­pact for the cam­paign, I will keep the num­ber high to er on the side of con­ser­va­tively eval­u­at­ing the po­ten­tial coun­ter­fac­tual im­pact of the campaign

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