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Ca­reer choice

Core TagLast edit: 15 Jun 2021 12:51 UTC by Pablo

Career choice is a crucial decision in the life of most individuals. People spend more time on their jobs than on any other activity besides sleep—about 80,000 hours over the course of a typical life (MacAskill 2014: 269). Choosing the right career, therefore, may be one of the most impactful things an altruistically-motivated person can do.

Despite its high importance, career choice has received very limited attention. One of the earliest publications on the subject was a youth essay by Karl Marx, who held that we should choose the career “which offers us the widest scope to work for mankind”. Such a career, Marx claimed, would be best not only altruistically but also for the person pursuing it, since “experience acclaims as happiest the man who has made the greatest number of people happy.” (Marx 1835) In contemporary philosophy, there is a small literature on whether it is permissible to pursue a non-altruistic rather than an altruistic career, but almost no discussion of how different careers should be ethically ranked (MacAskill 2014). Most of the relevant research on career choice has been conducted outside academia, primarily by the organization 80,000 Hours, which has developed a framework for comparing the social impact of different careers.

Holden Karnofsky has identified four alternative frameworks for making career choice decisions: paths to particular roles working on particular causes; aptitudes a candidate can build in a variety of roles and causes and apply to a variety of jobs; causes to which a candidate can contribute with their career; and heuristics, such as “Do work you can be great at” or “Do work that builds your career capital and gives you more options.” (Karnofsky 2021) 80,000 Hours uses the paths framework, while Karnofsky himself has focused mostly on the aptitude framework, though he advises candidates to consider multiple frameworks.

Bibliography

Cholbi, Michael (2020) The ethics of choosing careers and jobs, in Bob Fischer (ed.) College Ethics: a Reader on Moral Issues That Affect You, Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 878–889.
Argues against the “maximalist” view that we are morally required to choose the careers that do the most good.

Karnofsky, Holden (2021) My current impressions on career choice for longtermists, Effective Altruism Forum, June 4.

MacAskill, William (2014) Replaceability, career choice, and making a difference, Ethical Theory and Moral Practice, vol. 17, pp. 269–283.

Marx, Karl (1835) Reflections of a young man on the choice of a profession, in Collected Works, Moscow: Progress Publishers, 1975.

Todd, Benjamin (2016) 80,000 Hours: Find a Fulfilling Career That Does Good, Oxford: Centre for Effective Altruism.

Todd, Benjamin (2021) Planning a high-impact career: A summary of everything you need to know in 7 points, 80,000 Hours, May 6.

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10 points
0 comments2 min readEA link

[Question] What are some re­sources to learn how Tech­nol­ogy af­fects longter­mism in Poli­cy­mak­ing?

Venkatesh12 Jun 2020 14:50 UTC
2 points
1 comment2 min readEA link

Feed­back re­quested for an an­i­mal ad­vo­cacy and longter­mist ca­reer (di­rect and re­search)

MichaelDello18 Jun 2020 2:27 UTC
19 points
4 comments1 min readEA link

Re­search on de­vel­op­ing man­age­ment and lead­er­ship expertise

Jamie_Harris5 Mar 2020 16:57 UTC
41 points
9 comments1 min readEA link

In­tro­duc­ing the Sen­tience In­sti­tute Podcast

Jamie_Harris5 Dec 2019 18:12 UTC
22 points
0 comments1 min readEA link
(www.sentienceinstitute.org)

A naive anal­y­sis on if EA is Ta­lent constrained

agent1823 Mar 2020 23:09 UTC
30 points
17 comments15 min readEA link

An­i­mal Ad­vo­cacy Ca­reers advice

Jamie_Harris6 Jul 2020 12:56 UTC
43 points
2 comments1 min readEA link

[Question] Which spe­cial­iza­tion has a larger im­pact? En­vi­ron­men­tal Policy or En­vi­ron­men­tal Eco­nomics?

qjtva23 Jul 2019 21:38 UTC
5 points
2 comments1 min readEA link

A guide to im­prov­ing your odds at get­ting a job in EA

Joey19 Mar 2019 13:11 UTC
26 points
5 comments8 min readEA link

How to in­crease your odds of start­ing a ca­reer in char­ity entrepreneurship

Kat Woods3 Dec 2019 17:40 UTC
45 points
2 comments6 min readEA link

How Europe might mat­ter for AI governance

stefan.torges12 Jul 2019 23:42 UTC
48 points
13 comments8 min readEA link

So you want to do op­er­a­tions [Part one] - which skills do you need?

eirine28 Nov 2018 10:23 UTC
32 points
23 commentsEA link

So you want to do op­er­a­tions [Part two] - how to ac­quire and test for rele­vant skills

eirine17 Dec 2018 11:09 UTC
12 points
5 commentsEA link

Effec­tive an­i­mal ad­vo­cacy move­ment build­ing: a ne­glected op­por­tu­nity?

Jamie_Harris11 Jun 2019 20:33 UTC
68 points
11 comments17 min readEA link

Fi­nance Ca­reers for Earn­ing to Give

kbog6 Mar 2016 5:15 UTC
9 points
14 commentsEA link

Vo­ca­tional Ca­reer Guide for Effec­tive Altruists

kbog26 Jan 2019 11:16 UTC
32 points
8 commentsEA link

Joan Gass: How to build a high-im­pact ca­reer in in­ter­na­tional development

EA Global31 Jan 2020 19:58 UTC
30 points
2 comments15 min readEA link
(www.youtube.com)

[Question] Sys­temic change, global poverty erad­i­ca­tion, and a ca­reer plan re­think: am I right?

NoteworthyTrain14 Jul 2020 7:54 UTC
48 points
47 comments13 min readEA link

Ca­reer coach­ing for High School Students

lynettebye21 Jun 2020 22:18 UTC
31 points
0 comments1 min readEA link

[Question] What op­por­tu­ni­ties are there to use data sci­ence in global pri­ori­ties re­search?

evelynciara18 Aug 2020 2:48 UTC
15 points
2 comments1 min readEA link

Sin­ga­pore’s Tech­ni­cal AI Align­ment Re­search Ca­reer Guide

yiyang26 Aug 2020 8:09 UTC
32 points
7 comments8 min readEA link

When can Writ­ing Fic­tion Change the World?

timunderwood24 Aug 2020 13:53 UTC
61 points
5 comments11 min readEA link

[Question] Ex­am­ples of loss of jobs due to Covid in EA

agent1828 Aug 2020 8:20 UTC
6 points
7 comments1 min readEA link

How do poli­ti­cal sci­en­tists do good?

Timothy_Liptrot28 Aug 2020 19:17 UTC
18 points
12 comments4 min readEA link

What if you’re work­ing on the wrong cause? Pre­limi­nary thoughts on how long to spend ex­plor­ing vs ex­ploit­ing.

Kat Woods6 Feb 2017 22:13 UTC
25 points
3 commentsEA link

Lo­cal pri­ori­ties re­search: what is it, who should con­sider do­ing it, and why

yiyang6 Sep 2020 14:57 UTC
64 points
8 comments14 min readEA link

Ca­reers ad­vis­ing calls and an on­line course about im­pact-fo­cused an­i­mal advocacy

Jamie_Harris18 Sep 2020 13:37 UTC
17 points
0 comments1 min readEA link

Feed­back Re­quest on EA Philip­pines’ Ca­reer Ad­vice Re­search for Tech­ni­cal AI Safety

BrianTan3 Oct 2020 10:39 UTC
18 points
5 comments4 min readEA link

When To Find More In­for­ma­tion: A Short Explanation

Davidmanheim28 Dec 2019 18:00 UTC
72 points
11 comments2 min readEA link

(How) should we pur­sue hu­man longevity?

mwcvitkovic24 Oct 2020 19:08 UTC
2 points
0 comments1 min readEA link

How to give advice

SebastianSchmidt31 Oct 2020 13:56 UTC
11 points
2 comments4 min readEA link

Prob­lem area re­port: Pain

Sid Sharma13 Nov 2020 19:26 UTC
104 points
5 comments50 min readEA link

Want to Save the World? En­ter the Priesthood

zdgroff9 Jul 2019 9:18 UTC
18 points
17 comments2 min readEA link

An­i­mal product al­ter­na­tives for-profit roles spot-check

Jamie_Harris19 Nov 2020 7:31 UTC
20 points
0 comments17 min readEA link
(www.animaladvocacycareers.org)

[Question] What good are you do­ing to­day?

Prof.Weird20 Nov 2020 14:39 UTC
3 points
0 comments1 min readEA link

In­ter­ro­gat­ing Impact

SebastianSchmidt21 Nov 2020 11:16 UTC
28 points
6 comments4 min readEA link

The­ory Of Change As A Hy­poth­e­sis: Choos­ing A High-Im­pact Path When You’re Uncertain

lynettebye28 Nov 2020 4:36 UTC
19 points
5 comments3 min readEA link

Tech­ni­cal re­search for an­i­mal product al­ter­na­tives skills profile

Jamie_Harris30 Nov 2020 15:56 UTC
23 points
0 comments1 min readEA link
(www.animaladvocacycareers.org)

WANBAM is ac­cept­ing ex­pres­sions of in­ter­est for mentees!

KathrynMecrow4 Dec 2020 17:06 UTC
30 points
4 comments1 min readEA link

Health and hap­piness re­search top­ics—Part 1: Back­ground on QALYs and DALYs

Derek9 Dec 2020 0:38 UTC
109 points
6 comments76 min readEA link

[Question] How high im­pact are UK policy ca­reer paths?

Denise_Melchin17 Dec 2020 15:04 UTC
59 points
6 comments3 min readEA link

Health and hap­piness re­search top­ics—Part 2: The HALY+: Im­prov­ing prefer­ence-based health metrics

Derek3 Jan 2021 15:08 UTC
48 points
3 comments81 min readEA link

Health and hap­piness re­search top­ics—Part 3: The sHALY: Devel­op­ing sub­jec­tive wellbe­ing-based health metrics

Derek30 Dec 2020 15:27 UTC
36 points
4 comments42 min readEA link

Euro­pean Master’s Pro­grams in Ma­chine Learn­ing, Ar­tifi­cial In­tel­li­gence, and re­lated fields

Master Programs ML/AI17 Jan 2021 20:09 UTC
16 points
4 comments1 min readEA link

How EA Philip­pines got a Com­mu­nity Build­ing Grant, and how I de­cided to leave my job to do EA-al­igned work full-time

BrianTan27 Jan 2021 5:57 UTC
34 points
8 comments10 min readEA link

Choose 10^x Pro­jects and Execute

Lars Mennen22 Feb 2021 9:14 UTC
16 points
0 comments4 min readEA link

Be Spe­cific About Your Career

Mark Xu24 Feb 2021 7:24 UTC
85 points
5 comments1 min readEA link
(markxu.com)

When I left Google

Jeff_Kaufman28 Feb 2021 21:40 UTC
38 points
0 comments2 min readEA link
(www.jefftk.com)

AMA: JP Ad­di­son and Sam Deere on soft­ware en­g­ineer­ing at CEA

JP Addison12 Mar 2021 22:54 UTC
53 points
58 comments1 min readEA link

[Question] Where would you look for an EA job ap­pli­ca­tions sup­port group?

Nathan Young16 Mar 2021 12:28 UTC
12 points
21 comments1 min readEA link

The $100trn op­por­tu­nity: ESG in­vest­ing should be a top pri­or­ity for EA careers

Sanjay18 Mar 2021 13:54 UTC
66 points
5 comments7 min readEA link

ESG in­vest­ing isn’t high-im­pact, but it could be

Sanjay18 Mar 2021 14:07 UTC
67 points
5 comments29 min readEA link

EA Up­dates for April 2021

DavidNash26 Mar 2021 14:26 UTC
39 points
0 comments4 min readEA link

Learn­ings from scal­ing the Effec­tive Altru­ism and Con­sult­ing Net­work/​ an EA group for one pro­fes­sion as um­brella for differ­ent work­place groups

Jona27 Mar 2021 11:36 UTC
30 points
4 comments8 min readEA link

For older EA-ori­ented ca­reer chang­ers: dis­cus­sion and com­mu­nity formation

AllAmericanBreakfast1 Jul 2019 20:46 UTC
47 points
7 comments3 min readEA link

Si­mul­ta­neous Shortage and Oversupply

Jeff_Kaufman26 Jan 2019 19:35 UTC
41 points
10 commentsEA link

When to fo­cus and when to re-evaluate

Joey24 Mar 2018 21:18 UTC
46 points
10 commentsEA link

[Ques­tion] 20,000/​40,000 Hours- MidCa­reer Options

LHarrison29 May 2019 11:43 UTC
23 points
9 comments1 min readEA link

Work­ing in Congress (Part #2): Assess­ing fit and land­ing a job

Locke_USA11 Apr 2021 18:24 UTC
42 points
3 comments28 min readEA link

How I got an en­try-level role in Congress

new_staffer12 Apr 2021 4:10 UTC
114 points
5 comments9 min readEA link

Ca­reer choice: Eval­u­ate op­por­tu­ni­ties, not just fields

Ben_Kuhn28 Sep 2014 21:37 UTC
18 points
8 commentsEA link

How Fun­gible Are In­ter­ests?

Rook16 Dec 2019 8:54 UTC
26 points
10 comments3 min readEA link

Com­par­a­tive ad­van­tage in the tal­ent mar­ket

Denise_Melchin11 Apr 2018 23:48 UTC
24 points
27 commentsEA link

Why I made a ca­reer switch

stijnbruers12 Mar 2019 9:00 UTC
19 points
1 comment10 min readEA link
(stijnbruers.wordpress.com)

On Be­com­ing World-Class

Aaron Gertler19 Oct 2018 1:35 UTC
22 points
7 commentsEA link

What if you want to have a big so­cial im­pact and live in a poorer coun­try?

Robert_Wiblin20 Dec 2015 16:58 UTC
12 points
13 commentsEA link

4/​29/​2021: GiveWell Board Mem­ber, EA Global Speaker, & Hewlett Foun­da­tion Pro­gram Officer, Norma Alt­shuler, is Giv­ing Ca­reer Ad­vice & Q&A for those in­ter­ested in Philan­thropy or Global Devel­op­ment Ca­reers

Mahendra Prasad29 Apr 2021 3:25 UTC
6 points
3 comments1 min readEA link

80,000 Hours: How use­ful are long-term ca­reer plans?

Aaron Gertler9 Oct 2019 1:03 UTC
11 points
0 comments8 min readEA link
(80000hours.org)

Th­ese are the world’s high­est im­pact ca­reer paths ac­cord­ing to our re­search − 80,000 Hours

80000_Hours30 Sep 2018 6:37 UTC
10 points
1 commentEA link

The most read 80,000 Hours posts from the last 3 months

Robert_Wiblin18 Dec 2015 18:16 UTC
3 points
1 commentEA link

In some cases, if a prob­lem is harder hu­man­ity should in­vest more in it, but you should be less in­clined to work on it

Robert_Wiblin21 Feb 2017 10:29 UTC
9 points
2 commentsEA link

Two in­ter­views with Holden

Benjamin_Todd3 Oct 2014 21:44 UTC
7 points
5 commentsEA link

Replaceability

Paul_Christiano22 Jan 2013 5:00 UTC
1 point
0 commentsEA link

Re­place­abil­ity in altruism

Ben_Kuhn29 Aug 2013 4:00 UTC
0 points
0 commentsEA link

To save the world, don’t get a job at a char­ity; go work on Wall Street

William_MacAskill27 Feb 2013 5:00 UTC
2 points
5 commentsEA link

Spit­bal­ling EA ca­reer ideas

Ben_Kuhn30 Nov 2014 0:02 UTC
12 points
33 commentsEA link

Ar­den Koehler: Ideas for high-im­pact ca­reers be­yond 80,000 Hours’ pri­or­ity paths

EA Global25 Oct 2020 5:48 UTC
6 points
0 comments1 min readEA link
(www.youtube.com)

How to iden­tify your lo­cal high im­pact ca­reer op­por­tu­ni­ties—pro­cess and tips from EA Sweden

Gabby_O4 May 2021 18:54 UTC
65 points
5 comments8 min readEA link

Should you do a PhD in sci­ence?

newptcai5 May 2021 22:35 UTC
8 points
19 comments2 min readEA link

Be­ing a to­bacco CEO is not quite as bad as it might seem

Larks28 Jan 2016 3:59 UTC
10 points
19 commentsEA link

Work­ing at EA or­ga­ni­za­tions se­ries: Why work at an EA or­ga­ni­za­tion?

SoerenMind18 Oct 2015 9:42 UTC
6 points
13 commentsEA link

Prob­lem area re­port: men­tal health

CaitlinWalker20 May 2021 11:20 UTC
68 points
9 comments3 min readEA link

Work­ing in Par­li­a­ment: How to get a job & have an impact

DavidZhang24 May 2021 10:46 UTC
63 points
8 comments9 min readEA link

AI Safety Ca­reer Bot­tle­necks Sur­vey Re­sponses Responses

Linda Linsefors28 May 2021 10:41 UTC
22 points
1 comment5 min readEA link

Curve­ball Alert Re­quest: How has your job changed over time?

tcelferact2 Jun 2021 17:27 UTC
19 points
0 comments2 min readEA link

US Policy Ca­reers Speaker Series—Sum­mer 2021

Mauricio18 Jun 2021 20:01 UTC
92 points
0 comments2 min readEA link

WANBAM mentee ap­pli­ca­tions are open un­til the end of July!

KathrynMecrow21 Jun 2021 21:19 UTC
41 points
3 comments1 min readEA link

[Pod­cast] Suggest a ques­tion for Ben Todd

luca6 Jul 2021 17:16 UTC
17 points
4 comments1 min readEA link

Writ­ing about my job: In­ter­net Blogger

AppliedDivinityStudies19 Jul 2021 20:24 UTC
75 points
12 comments5 min readEA link

[Question] Ca­reer ad­vice for Aus­tralian sci­ence un­der­grad in­ter­ested in welfare biology

ripbennyharvey21 Jul 2021 5:53 UTC
18 points
4 comments2 min readEA link

Nar­ra­tion: The case against “EA cause ar­eas”

D0TheMath24 Jul 2021 20:39 UTC
12 points
5 comments1 min readEA link
(anchor.fm)

Writ­ing about my job: Re­search Fel­low, FHI

rgb29 Jul 2021 13:53 UTC
36 points
2 comments8 min readEA link