Thanks for sharing this Joey—really interesting!
>A particular concern that came up was that there is already a lot of frustration from job seekers and individuals not having a sense of how they can have an impact outside of a pretty small number of jobs and opportunities, with expansion likely to aggravate this problem.
This sentiment strikes me as incorrect, and a bit worrying. My perception is that EA could do with spreading out a bunch from its current distribution. For example, it would be great to see more policy work along the lines of HIPE for different governments (eg I know of very little few EAs thinking about EU policy) , more specialists in different types of potentially important technology like recommender systems and a greater breadth of understanding of different potentially important organisations, whether intergovernmental like the WHO and UN, or companies. I’m also excited about people starting more effective non-profits, as CE is facilitating. My perception is that what’s hard for people seeking career paths is figuring out what path would best suit them, rather than an actual lack of roles which help others in expectation. It’s not at all clear that expansion would make this problem worse rather than better, and it strikes me that it would depend a lot on how EA grows. For example, if we grew by attracting people from a broader range of organisations then they might bring more ideas for which people would be best suited helping where. If more people joined of an entrepreneurial mindset, perhaps it would cause new charities to spring up and so increase the number of roles available. That’s not to say I think all things considered that EA should be expanding rather than improving—I’m not sure about that. But at the extreme this reasoning looks like avoiding the expansion of EA to prevent people currently outside EA from being hired to specific roles, which seems likely to harm our impact to me.