Rethink Priorities

Rethink Priorities

Global Priorities Research

Rethink Priorities’ mission is to generate the most significant possible impact for others in the present and the long-term future. Using evidence and reason, it identifies where resources would be most effective and helps direct them there. It does this by conducting critical research to inform policymakers and philanthropists, and by guiding the development of new organisations to address key problems.


What problem is Rethink Priorities working on?

Rethink Priorities' work covers important and neglected cause areas, including animal welfare, artificial intelligence, climate change, global health and development, and other work to safeguard a flourishing long-term future. It also aims to understand and support effective altruism — the community of people focused on these issues.

What does Rethink Priorities do?

Rethink Priorities works as all of the following:

  • A consultancy doing commissioned work in response to demands from effective altruism organisations.
  • A research institute driven by research agendas it sets according to its own priorities.
  • A think tank aiming to inform public policy to improve the world.
  • An accelerator, incubator, and base for new priority projects.

As part of that work, Rethink Priorities:

  • Studied how to measure and compare the wellbeing of humans and of different other animal species, including its reports on moral weights across species.
  • Helped animal advocacy organisations, policymakers, and funders identify the most cost-effective strategies.
  • Studied how to govern artificial intelligence and other potential risks for future generations.

To learn more, check out all of Rethink Priorities' published work and updates about its strategy.

What information does Giving What We Can have about the cost-effectiveness of Rethink Priorities?

We’ve since updated our recommendations to reflect only organisations recommended by evaluators we’ve looked into as part of our 2023 evaluator investigations. As such, we don't currently include Rethink Priorities as one of our recommended programs but you can still donate to it via our donation platform.

Note that we and Longview are both part of Effective Ventures — see our transparency page.

Please note that GWWC does not evaluate individual charities.

Our recommendations are based on the research of third-party, impact-focused charity evaluators our research team has found to be particularly well-suited to help donors do the most good per dollar, according to their recent evaluator investigations. Our other supported programs are those that align with our charitable purpose — they are working on a high-impact problem and take a reasonably promising approach (based on publicly-available information).

At Giving What We Can, we focus on the effectiveness of an organisation's work -- what the organisation is actually doing and whether their programs are making a big difference. Some others in the charity recommendation space focus instead on the ratio of admin costs to program spending, part of what we’ve termed the “overhead myth.” See why overhead isn’t the full story and learn more about our approach to charity evaluation.