Alec Stapp: Policy for Progress, Under-Researched Areas, Science of Science, Biosecurity

Ben Yeoh Chats | 28 February 2022 | 1h 29m | Listen Later | Podcasts | Spotify
Interview with Alec Stapp about his work at the Institute for Progress. Discusses the competing interests that prevent physical infrastructure being built easily. Explains the IFP’s focusing framework – impact (will it be impactful), tractability (is it possible?), under-researched (are many other people working on the challenge?). Also discusses why biosecurity (pandemic preparedness), meta-science (understanding how science progresses) and immigration (in particular high skilled) are the initial areas of interest and what other areas, like climate, might be next.

Aella: Escort Work, Home School, Rationalism, and Questions

Ben Yeoh Chats | 13 November 2021 | 1h 14m | Listen Later | iTunes | Spotify
Interview with Aella discussing what is misunderstood about escort work and emotional intimacy, losing faith and the effect of having ideas she took for granted turned on their head, psychedelics, homeschooling, rationalism, understanding moral arguments in their place in time, and the power of the right question.

Matt Clancy on Innovation, Progress Studies and Remote Work

Ben Yeoh Chats | 15 July 2021 | 2h 05m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Matt Clancy discussing progress; the importance of moral and social progress as well as technological progress; whether small or large teams are better for invention; agglomeration effects and how a declining agglomeration impact might make the case for remote work stronger; the role of innovation prizes and patents for incentivising innovation and if copyright is too long; innovation agencies; differences between UK and US university systems and advice for young people; and remote work.

Leopold Aschenbrenner on Existential Risk & German Culture

Ben Yeoh Chats | 23 June 2021 | 1h 47m | Listen Later | iTunes
Wide-ranging interview with Leopold Aschenbrenner that captures the perspectives of a fine young mind. Discusses existential risk; whether nuclear or biological warfare risk is a bigger threat than climate change; how growth matters; the problem of falling global birth rates; German culture and whether he’d swap German infrastructure for the American entrepreneurial spirit; insights from starting university at 15; the merits of elite universities; and much more. Draws on his paper Existential Risk and Growth.

Anton Howes on Innovation History, the Improving Mindset & Progress Studies

Ben Yeoh Chats | 21 May 2021 | 1h 26m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Anton Howes discussing lessons from the history of innovation, the improving mentality, Progress Studies, the case for a new “Great Exhibition”, economic stagnation, copyright, and more.

I highly recommend Anton’s newsletter, Age of Invention.