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The Why And How Of Effective Altruism

MFG Archive

In his TED Talk, moral philosopher Peter Singer questions the most effective method for giving, while sharing some examples of altruism.


Peter Singer uses his TED talk to walk the viewer through a range of thought experiments and examples to help you balance emotion and practicality in giving — and make the biggest impact with whatever you can share.


“Effective altruism combines the heart and the head”

Singer believes we are seeing a trend in the development of effective altruism – something he believes “combines the heart and the head.” Citing key public figures and philanthropists as examples, he also uses his talk to tackle the issue of what prevents the wider public from giving effectively. He believes it boils down to four key questions:

Question 1: How much of a difference can I make?

Question 2: Am I expected to abandon my career?

Question 3: Isn’t charity bureaucratic and ineffective?

Question 4: Isn’t it a burden to give up so much?

Ultimately, he believes effective altruism is a solution to some of the difficulties that come with being a part of consumer driven society, where satisfaction is always just out of reach. By contrast, finding an answer to the above questions and investing in effective altruism allows us to create real, lasting change.


Watch Singer’s TED talk to hear the answers to his questions. As always, be sure to let us know what you think either in the comments below or on social.

Many thanks to Peter Singer for sharing his views and emphasizing the power of effective altruism.

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