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Professional Philanthropy

August 15th, 2012
giving, earning_to_give, terms

80,000 hours has started referring to the make money to donate approach as "professional philanthropy" [1]. I do like having a name for it, but I'm not sure this is a good one. Talking to people, many interpret it as "have a lot of money, treat giving it away as a full time job". It gives the impression that having a lot of money is a precondition for a "professional philanthropy" career.

Is there a better name that would indicate a strategy of "choose your job to maximize the expected value of your donations"?

(Searching for "professional philanthropy" I see other uses of the term, none of them to mean 'earn and give': strategic giving, unclear meaning (satire), institutional partnership, and volunteering professional skills. The only uses in 80,000 hours sense, outside of their own site seem to be on the socially related sites LessWrong and Felicifia.)


[1] Or occasionally "pro-phil", which I interpreted as "professional philosophy" for the longest time.

Update 2012-08-19: Discussion on a mailing list consensed on "earning to give". While it doesn't really have a noun form ("I'm an 'earn-to-giver'"?) it's short, self-explanatory, and doesn't appear to be being used for anything else.

Update 2013-02-26: "earning to give" now seems to be the term.

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