Effective Altruism Fellowship

Hosted by EA Helsinki and Aalto EA, Autumn 2021


How can we do the most good? The fellowship is an intensive and rewarding 8-week programme for university students and other people interested in improving the world.

The fellowship is an introduction to the principles of effective altruism. The weekly readings are followed by a group discussion. They make an excellent opportunity to deeply engage with ideas and strategies for effectively improving the world with the resources we have, and meet with like-minded people.

Fellows will combine the head and the heart, as they apply rigor and rationality to questions regarding morality and altruism.
We are looking for students who will not be content with doing some good, and instead have the
ambition and drive to do the most good they can.

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Readings

The curriculum is developed by the Centre for Effective Altruism and has been trialed with multiple groups.

The Effectiveness Mindset

Week 1

This week we’ll investigate what opportunities to do good we have available to us, come to terms with the tradeoffs we face in our altruistic efforts and explore tools that can help us find unusually high impact opportunities.

Differences in Impact

Week 2

We focus on giving you tools to quantify and evaluate how much good an intervention can achieve; introduce expected value reasoning; and investigate differences in expected cost-effectiveness between interventions.

Expanding Our Compassion

Week 3

This week focuses on your own values and the practical implications that these views have. During week 3 we explore who our moral consideration should expand to, with a particular focus on farmed animals as a case example.

FAQ

Who is this fellowship for?

We especially encourage students at the University of Helsinki and Aalto University to apply to be a fellow, but people with other backgrounds are also welcome. 

 

In order to get the most out of this program, Effective Altruism Fellows will be:

- Willing and able to commit ~3-4 hours per week during the whole 8-week fellowship
- Passionate about helping others
- Open-minded and flexible, eager to update their beliefs in response to persuasive evidence

 

We are committed to building a diverse cohort of Fellows. There is some evidence suggesting that underprivileged individuals tend to underestimate their abilities. We do not want the application process to dissuade potential candidates and we strongly encourage interested students to apply regardless of gender, race, ethnicity, nationality, ability, etc. We also encourage both undergraduate, graduate and professional students, as well as individuals from all intellectual backgrounds and majors to apply. 
 

The application process

Round 1: Fill out the application form. We will let you know whether you will proceed to Round 2.

 

Round 2: Complete a short reading, and attend an interview with a member of our leadership team in which you will discuss your thoughts on the assigned reading.

 

The interviews will take place on October 11-17. We will let you know by October 22 whether you have been accepted to the fellowship program.
Accepted fellows will meet for the first time in the end of the October. 


Don’t forget to apply on time! We look forward to reading your application!

What is Effective Altruism?

Effective altruism is about finding out how we can use our resources to help others the most.

 

Effective Altruism Helsinki is a welcoming local community dedicated to inspiring and supporting one another to achieve altruistic goals. We organize monthly meetups, as well as occasional workshops and discussion groups. 

 

Visit https://www.altruismi.fi to learn more. 

What does the fellowship consist of?

Every week you will have reading to do and a 90 min discussion session. In addition to that, we will organise (virtual) social events where you can get to know fellowship participants outside your discussion group. We also encourage you to have 1-on-1 chat with a facilitator where you can discuss any questions that you might have. 

How good English skills do I need?

All the readings are in English, so it’s good if you are used to reading in English. However, you don’t need to be a native English speaker, neither are we. Most of our facilitators are students who also speak Finnish, so there is the possibility to run Finnish (or even Swedish) discussion groups too. Anyway, we encourage you to have an open mindset. This could also be a good opportunity to improve your English skills, as you learn and talk with others about interesting topics!

Timeline

The application period ends: 30 September 2021.

Interviews: 11-17 October.

The fellowship starts on 29 October and lasts 8 weeks. 
(The weekly meetups for each discussion group will be decided later)

Recommendations

80% of the spring 2021 fellowship participants said they would highly recommend the fellowship to their friends.

“The fellowship was well organised, discourse oriented, and surprisingly thorough. I received important insights on the topical socio-political and existential issues, and gained lots of inspiration for my studies and future career as an aspiring economist. What I appreciated especially was the multidisciplinary setup of the groups!”

Ilkka Lähde, Economics Student
“Taking part in the Fellowship was a very rewarding experience. The group discussions gave interesting new viewpoints every week, and I was happy to get to meet like-minded people from different fields and hear their insights on our topics. Many thanks to the EA Helsinki Fellowship team, and our group leader in particular!”

Sara Mansnerus, Law and Music Student
“The fellowship enables you to actively learn EA concepts and stress test your understanding in a safe environment every week. Highly recommended!”

Aayush Kucheria, Data Science Student
“Parasta fellowshipissä oli oppia ja keskustella mielenkiintoisista ja merkityksellisistä asioista samanhenkisten, mutta kuitenkin erilaisten ihmisten kanssa. Opin samalla paljon myös itsestäni.”

Iris Kause, Engineering Physics Student
“We read unbelievably good, perspective-widening materials, and had very interesting conversations on the most important topics of life. The greatest thing was meeting awesome, smart and like-minded people. I can recommend a fellowship to everyone whether you are a first year student or finished your studies years ago.”

Tapio Lahtiharju, Medicine Postgraduate

Contact us

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to fellowship@altruismi.fi
More info on https://www.altruismi.fi

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