Co-Founder AI Lab @ Ashoka
42 karmaJoined Working (6-15 years)Berlin, Germany



I'm the Co-Founder of the Ashoka AI Lab. Ashoka is the world's largest network of social entrepreneurs. I develop applications that make the organization more efficient.

Before AI took over my life, I developed strategies for systemic changes in society with social entrepreneurs. I published articles, reports, and tools about systemic impact and helped foundations, politicians, and administrations become more savvy when it comes to systemic impact.

Before Ashoka, I was a consultant at McKinsey.

I co-founded three social ventures. I love to co-initiate projects and to then hand things over to my co-founders or successors. I'm looking for opportunities to do that within the EA community.

How others can help me

I founded https://actuallyrelevant.news, an AI-powered news curation service. I'm looking for

  • feedback from EAs on the website, newsletter, and podcast
  • input from experts in existential risk areas to improve the evaluations of news items by the AI


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There is! You can use the technology behind Actually Relevant to create bespoke feeds with your own news sources and relevance criteria. I sent a DM to schedule a call.

Thanks so much for the feedback!

I submitted the podcast to PocketCasts. I should be available within a few days. (Also Podchaser and a few others I had missed.)

I agree that "Actually Relevant" can come off as dismissive or confrontational. I'll check how big of an issue this is for other people. Maybe we can balance this impression somehow with other aspects of the service. I'm hesitant about changing the name as that would be quite a hassle.

Thanks for the feedback!

The system has picked up on Sudan (https://actuallyrelevant.news/?s=sudan) to some extent, starting in May 2023 with the UN warning of a "full-blown catastrophe", in September 2023 on Sudan having fallen "over the edge of mass atrocities", in February 2024 with ~11m people uprooted and ~19m children out of school; and recently highlighting 18m affected by food insecurity.

Still, the system would probably benefit from news sources that specialize on under-reported conflicts. If anybody knows a good one, please let us know!

I'm looking for a diversified investment fund that engages in shareholder activism in a systematic way. Basically a Vanguard MSCI World, but with hundreds of lawyers whose only job is to push corporate agendas for the common good. In your research, did you come across any firms or products that I could take a look at? I've been doing a quick search once a year for some time now, but so far, I haven't found anything attractive that works for me as a retail investor.

I'd like to add three aspects of Chuck's philanthropy that are not mentioned in the post and that he shared with us for a report we published in 2022 called "Influence for Good":

  • In addition to universities and hospitals, Chuck also supported various initiatives for systemic change, including the piece process in Ireland and the healthcare system in Vietnam.
  • In his systems change philanthropy, he gave up control and put it in the hands of "proximate leaders".
  • Chuck didn't just use his financial assets. He also invested large amounts of social and political capital to promote change.

See https://www.ashoka.org/en-us/influence-for-good for a profile on Chuck and more information on these principles.

I created a prototype that does this filtering with the help of AI: https://actuallyrelevant.news.

Not completely in line with the features you listed, but it does identify ~15 stories each week that are important for humanity (out of 1,000 that are evaluated) and analyzes the relevance.

Thanks so much for taking a deeper look at one of the articles! I think you're right: a somewhat lower rating seems more appropriate in this case.

I believe that two things are true for the algorithm behind Actually Relevant: 1) almost all posts are more important for humanity than 90% of news articles by other outlets. In that sense, it's already useful. 2) Many relevance analyses are still off by at least one grade on the rating scale, meaning that some posts get a "major" or "critical" tag that should not get it. The idea is to use community and expert feedback to finetune the prompts to get even better results in the future. I also want to involve a human editor who could double check and adjust dubious cases.

In the post you referenced, the AI says: "The eviction has affected over 70,000 people and risks cultural extinction for the Maasai people. It also highlights the need for a reevaluation of international legal norms and systems around land rights. In certain scenarios, this situation could lead to a broader movement for indigenous land rights in Tanzania and beyond, making it an issue that is far more relevant for humanity than the number of directly affected people would suggest." I think it's a good sign that the algorithm realized that the extinction of an entire culture and developments around indiginous land rights should lead to a higher rating than the number of directly affected people would suggest. It might still be off in this case, but I'm optimistic that additional finetuning can get us there.

EA-aligned news curation service - prototype online

Actually Relevant is a news curation service that evaluates stories based on how relevant they are for humanity and its long-term future. The website is a first prototype. I hope that Actually Relevant will promote EA causes and perspectives to more people, and that it will free EA-aligned readers from the headaches of irrelevant news.

I'm looking for

  • feedback What do you like? How can we improve?
  • interview partners 15 minutes to understand how you read the news and what you want to get out of your news consumption
  • partners in crime Let me know if you want to get involved

I just started a project along similar lines called Actually Relevant. You can see a first prototype at https://actuallyrelevant.news/. Would love to be in touch with both you and @finm to discuss it! Please send a PM if you're interested.

Looking for partners in crime to explore a "scope sensitive news provider"

I would like to find out if there is a market for a news provider that selects stories based on how much they matter to sentient life in the universe.[1] Specifically, I would like to run a few experiments following the Lean Startup approach, like pretending that the service already exists to see how many people would subscribe.

Please reach out

  • if you want to be involved in this exploration,
  • if you would pay for scope sensitive news, or
  • if you have ideas that you think we should consider in the exploration or in the prototypes.
  1. ^

    I took this idea more seriously when I read the post "What happens on the average day". rosehadshar mention "scope sensitivity" as their first criterion for an ideal news provider and define it as "a serious, good faith attempt to tell the stories that matter most to the most sentient life."

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