Introducing GPI’s new research agenda

The Global Priorities Institute has published a new research agenda, which aims to reflect our current research focus accurately.

GPI’s mission is to conduct and promote what we call ‘global priorities research’: research into issues that arise in response to the question, ‘What should we do with a given amount of limited resources if our aim is to do the most good?’ This question naturally draws upon central themes in the fields of economics and philosophy.

Thus defined, global priorities research is in principle a broad umbrella. Within that umbrella, this research agenda sets out the more specific research themes that GPI is particularly interested in at the present time.

The research agenda is structured as follows:

  • Section 1 outlines what we call the longtermism paradigm. This paradigm centres around the idea that because of the potential vastness of the future portion of the history of sentient life, it may well be that the primary determinant of which actions are best is the effects of those actions on the very long-run future, rather than on more immediate considerations. Because these ideas seem plausible, seem likely to have fairly radically revisionary implications if correct, and are currently quite neglected, this is the main focus of GPI’s own research (at the time of writing and, we predict, for at least the next two years). We are particularly keen to hear from other researchers who share this interest.

  • Section 2 concerns general issues in cause prioritisation. This covers issues that are not specific to a longtermist point of view, but that arise for agents engaged in an exercise of global prioritisation.

The intended audience for this document is academics (especially, but not only, in economics and philosophy) who are potentially interested in working with GPI, whether as GPI researchers or as external collaborators, or who are otherwise interested in the same mission.

We invite you to read the new research agenda here.