User:Sir Paul/William MacAskill

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William MacAskill
Alma mater Cambridge University
University of Oxford
Era Contemporary philosophy
Region Western philosophy
Main interests
Effective altruism
Notable ideas
80,000 Hours, Giving What We Can

William MacAskill (born William Crouch[1]; March 24, 1987) is a Scottish philosopher and cofounder of the effective altruism movement. He is currently an Associate Professor in Philosophy at Lincoln College, Oxford. MacAskill is also the founder and president of 80,000 Hours,[2] the co-founder and vice-president of Giving What We Can,[3] and the author of Doing Good Better: Effective Altruism and a Radical New Way to Make a Difference.


MacAskill was educated at Cambridge, Princeton, and Oxford, where he obtained a PhD in philosophy in 2013.[4]


MacAskill's work and his organisations have been featured in The New York Times,[5] The Wall St Journal,[6] The Washington Post,[7] The Huffington Post,[8] The Guardian,[9] BBC News,[10] BBC Radio 4’s The Today Programme,[11] CNBC,[12] NPR,[13] TED,[14] and other media outlets globally. He is a regular contributor to Quartz, and has written for The New Yorker,[15] The Guardian,[16] The Independent,[17] Time,[18] and The Washington Post.[19]

MacAskill's argument that young idealists should work for Wall Street has been the subject of a New York Times op-ed by David Brooks.[20] Brooks argued that, while effective altruists may start earning to give in order to realize their deepest commitments, their values may erode over time, becoming progressively less altruistic. In addition, Brooks objected to the view on which altruists should turn themselves "into a machine for the redistribution of wealth."

In 2014, MacAskill was a notable critic of the ice bucket challenge.[21][22][23]


  1. ^ MacAskill, William. "Men Should Consider Changing Their Last Names When They Get Married". The Atlantic. Retrieved 2013-10-16. 
  2. ^ "Meet the Team". Retrieved 2015-11-26. 
  3. ^ "The Team". Retrieved 2015-11-26. 
  4. ^ MacAskill, William. "". Retrieved 2013-10-16. 
  5. ^ Rosenberg, Tina. "Putting Charities to the Test". The New York Times. Retrieved 2013-10-16. 
  6. ^ Espinoza, Javier. "Small Sacrifice, Big Return". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 2013-10-16. 
  7. ^ Matthews, Dylan. "Join Wall Street. Save the world". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2013-10-16. 
  8. ^ "Rutgers Students Launch Movement, Promise Half Of Salary To Charities For Life". The Huffington Post. Retrieved 2013-10-16. 
  9. ^ "Unthinkable? Giving 10%". The Guardian. Retrieved 2013-10-16. 
  10. ^ Coughlan, Sean. "Banking 'can be an ethical career choice'". BBC News. Retrieved 2013-10-16. 
  11. ^ Hislop, Ian. "Do bankers make the world better?". BBC Radio 4. Retrieved 2013-10-16. 
  12. ^ "Wall Street Saves the World?". CNBC. Retrieved 2013-10-16. 
  13. ^ Memmot, Mark. "How Much Good Can You Do?". NPR. Retrieved 2013-10-16. 
  14. ^ Singer, Peter. "The why and how of effective altruism". TED. Retrieved 2013-10-16. 
  15. ^ MacAskill, William. "Does Divestment Work?". The New Yorker. Retrieved 2015-11-26. 
  16. ^ MacAskill, William. "What Is the Most Effective Way to Help Refugees". The Guardian. Retrieved 2015-11-26. 
  17. ^ "How to make a difference this Tuesday". The Independent. Retrieved 2015-12-1.  Check date values in: |access-date= (help)
  18. ^ MacAskill, William. "Skydiving for Charity". Time. Retrieved 2015-11-26. 
  19. ^ MacAskill, William. "Working for a Hedge Fund Could Be the Most Charitable Thing You Do". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2015-11-26. 
  20. ^ Brooks, David. "The Way to Produce a Person". The New York Times. Retrieved 2013-10-16. 
  21. ^ Condon, Stephanie Ice bucket challenge: More than just "hashtag activism"? CBS News. June 25, 2015
  22. ^ Wilkinson, Michael Why I turned down the Ice Bucket Challenge The Telegraph. June 25, 2015
  23. ^ Specter, Michael A Better Ice-Bucket Challenge The New Yorker. June 25, 2015

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