"Reason for my disagreement with [75w]. I think..."


by Alexei Andreev Dec 31 2016

Reason for my disagreement with A typical donor with a $5,000 charity budget, on the margin, has increasing returns to scale.

I think a typical donor wants and will (even after hours of due diligence) donate to organizations that already have a somewhat steady stream of donations. I think the best usecase for Donor lottery is to raise enough money to kickstart new projects, ones that wouldn't be able to get off the ground with 50% of the required funding. And if that's the case, we should probably be running EA kickstarters and not doing donor lotteries.


Benjamin Hoffman

This seems like it specifically addresses the "lumpy" case where a program only makes sense above a certain magnitude, but isn't so relevant for the case where lowering the expected cost of evaluating giving opportunities is the main benefit. (Carl and Paul seem to mainly have had in mind the case of returns to scale due to better evaluation, rather than charities with increasing returns to funding.)