Alyssa defines Creativity as "having new ideas rather than evaluating existing ones," but I would argue this definition still contains too much ambiguity. Would it be more meaningful to measure "having new ideas rather than evaluating existing ones" by the number of new ideas? Or should we put more weight on the newness—by which I mean "farthest away in idea-space from conventional ideas"—of ideas considered part of the EA movement?
If it's the latter, there seems to me a great deal of evidence that EA anchors for more creativity, not less. At the EA Summit I attended, advocates of the following ideas were heavily represented:
- Artificial Intelligence as an Existential Threat is one of humanity's most important challenges
- Death can and should be "cured" so that humans can live forever
- Animal rights are just as important as human rights
- People should reprogram their minds to become more rational
And so on. These ideas are seriously new, and far away in idea-space from the mainstream. (A couple are just barely beginning to become respectable.)
EA attracts eccentric intellectuals, who tend toward wild ideas like we should get off the planet, live forever, upload our brains into computers, experiment with alternate political systems on artificial islands, etc. Is it plausible these people are less creative than the general population? It doesn't seem so to me.