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GWWC is a society of people interested in giving to charities that do the most good for the money. We make recommendations so that our members, and anyone else with similar aims, can do this as well as possible. Our research is done by a volunteer team — mostly academics from Oxford, Cambridge, and Rutgers.
Unlike many charity evaluators, we are not very interested in conventional metrics, such as percent spent on “overhead costs,” donor approval, or salary of highest paid employee. We just want to donate to charities that will improve people‘s lives the most with the money, and we don‘t care too much about these other criteria. Since we know that some interventions are thousands of times more effective than others, it makes sense to ask more substantive questions like, “How many lives will this charity save for another $100,000?” or “How many kids won‘t be infected with parasitic worms this year if this charity gets another $100,000?” So far, the best opportunities we‘ve found are in the area of developing world health, so we quantify impact primarily in terms of DALYs averted.
For our original recommendations, GWWC relied on a number of sources including GiveWell, a larger charity evaluator with a similar view on what counts as real impact; the Disease Control Priorities Report , a systematic review of the cost-effectiveness of different developing world health interventions; other published cost-effectiveness estimates; discussions with public health experts; and discussions with the charities that we are reviewing. This lead to a substantially similar set of recommendations to what we have now. For our most recent round of recommendations, we have relied much more extensively on GiveWell, though we have continued to look these other sources. It is fair to say that their research has been largely responsible for our updated opinions about SCI, AMF, and Stop TB Partnership.
Over the next year, we are scaling up our research and we will be examining charities in areas that we have not investigated in detail before, including advocacy, vaccination research, and global catastrophic risks. We hope that we will find some opportunities in these areas that offer greater returns than the charities we currently recommend.
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