Saturday, April 5th: Aid Grade! (from Harvard Effective Altruism)

A communication from Harvard Effective Altruism:


Hi altruists,

Saturday, April 5th is a big day for EA at Harvard: we have three different awesome events for you! Our guest for the day, flying up from DC for the occasion, will be Dr. Eva Vivalt, the founder of AidGrade. AidGrade helps figure out what works in international development by doing rigorous and engaging analyses of different interventions to find out their effects. They’re also looking for interns and full-time hires for this work, so please visit if you’re interested!

We’ll be having a talk on AidGrade’s research from 1-2pm, followed by a research-a-thon from 2-6 where we help AidGrade do some meta-analysis. The day will be topped off by a Boston-area effective altruism meetup at Clover–with another special guest, Jacob Trefethen of 80,000 Hours Cambridge UK, and many awesome local effective altruists.

AidGrade research talk

How much can we generalize from impact evaluation results?

Saturday, April 5th – 1-2 PM

Science Center 110

Dr. Vivalt’s latest research provides the first estimates of how much one can generalize from impact evaluations across a wide variety of interventions in development. Results from impact evaluations on similar interventions have significant predictive power for studies done in different contexts; however, government-executed programs fare worse and are not well-predicted, suggesting problems for scale-up. Contrary to findings in other disciplines, impact evaluations in development economics do not appear to suffer from much manipulation (e.g. publication bias).

Dr. Vivalt will also discuss AidGrade’s work, organizational goals, and less technical findings. If you’re interested in an internship or full-time work, please do come!


Introduction to researching meta-analyses

Saturday, April 5th – 2-6 PM

Science Center 110

Dr. Vivalt will teach us how to do some of the kind of work that AidGrade does. By volunteering with AidGrade, we’ll:

  • Help improve aid
  • Learn how to do research
  • Gain relevant work experience for jobs or research experience for graduate school
  • Have fun
  • Explore something new

    Effective Altruism meetup

    Dinner and informal discussion

    Saturday, April 5th – 6 PM onwards

    Clover, 7 Holyoke Street, Cambridge

    Following the research events, we’ll adjourn to Clover for informal discussions of effective altruism. Dr. Vivalt will be in attendance, as will Jacob Trefethen of 80,000 Hours Cambridge UK and many local Boston-area effective altruists. Come eat and be merry!

    Eva Vivalt is a post-doctoral fellow at New York University. She has a Ph.D. in Economics and an M.A. in Mathematics from the University of California, Berkeley and spent two years as a Young Professional at the World Bank, where she worked in the Development Economics Research Group. Eva completed an M.Phil. in Development Studies at Oxford University on a Commonwealth Scholarship after obtaining her A.B. from Dartmouth College. She previously worked as a consultant in the World Bank’s Development Economics Research Group and has extensive experience with international development, including field experience, through work with the UN Development Program, Oxford Development Abroad, and numerous other charity groups.

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