Application Form — Foundational Research Institute
Please complete the following form before submitting your application. The form shouldn't take more than 30 - 45 minutes and will help us learn more about your interests, background and motivation in order to determine whether you are a good fit for us.

Please submit your responses in English. Note that this form is designed to evaluate people aiming to work with us in different projects or research areas. This means that some questions don't deal with the requirements of the specific job you're applying for or might seem otherwise incongruous. Nevertheless, we encourage you to answer them all.

We will delete your application data from our systems in four years.

Contact information
First name *
Your answer
Last name *
Your answer
E-Mail *
Your answer
Social media (e.g. Twitter, Facebook)
(Optional)
Your answer
Skype
(Optional)
Your answer
How did you learn about FRI? *
Your answer
How did you find out that we are hiring? *
Your answer
Which of our research areas are you interested in? *
Not really
A bit
Some
A lot
Extremely
Risks of astronomical future suffering
(Risks from) Artificial Intelligence
Multiverse-wide superrationality
Decision theory
Suffering-focused ethics
Descriptive (population) ethics
Game theory, cooperation & compromise
Wild Animal Suffering
Which research questions would you like to work on and why? *
You are encouraged to list 1-5 specific research questions
Your answer
Why would you like to work for FRI? *
If you are applying in response to a specific job, please note this here.
Your answer
Suppose FRI didn't exist – would you be interested in working for any of the organizations listed below?
Note: If you have worked for any of those organizations, you have the opportunity to mention this in the next question. Also, please don't be discouraged if you haven't heard of any of these organizations.
Don't know this organization
Not interested
Somewhat interested
Very interested
Effective Altruism Foundation (EAF)
Raising for Effective Giving (REG)
Machine Intelligence Research Institute (MIRI)
Centre for Effective Altruism (CEA)
Open Philanthropy Project (Open Phil)
Future of Humanity Institute (FHI)
80 000 Hours
GiveWell
Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE)
Have you worked for any of the above listed or affiliated organizations?
If yes, please write the name of the organization(s).
Your answer
Which cause areas do you sympathize with and support?
Not really
A bit
Some
A lot
International Aid & Poverty
Animal Welfare
Wild Animal Suffering
Feminism & Social Justice
Environmentalism & Climate Change
Existential Risks (not including AI)
AI Risks
When would you like to start working with us? *
Your answer
For how long would you like to work with us? *
Your answer
Are you interested in working part-time or full-time? *
What is your current employment status? *
Please provide the name of the organization you currently work for or study at.
Your answer
What are your salary expectations at FRI? *
Please provide lower and upper bounds for your salary expectations both initially and longer-term.
Your answer
How much time have you spent acquiring knowledge in the following areas (not including high school)? *
Please note that many successful applicants didn't have extensive knowledge in many of these areas.
None
1 - 10 hours
10 - 100 hours
100 - 1000 hours
Over 1000 hours
Mathematics & logic
Statistics
Computer science & programming
Decision theory
Philosophy (analytical)
Philosophy (continental)
Social sciences
Rationality & cognitive science
Physics & cosmology
Evolutionary theory
Economics
Game theory
Describe briefly why your knowledge and expertise makes you a good fit for FRI *
Your answer
What languages do you speak?
If you were to be given ten million dollars, what would you do with the money? *
Please explain your answer.
Your answer
Do you think there is more happiness or suffering in the world? *
Much more suffering
Much more happiness
Imagine there is a magical button in front of you. Pressing the button creates two new distant planets that we will never have contact with. The first planet, called “planet utopia”, is inhabited by some number (N) of humans. On this planet, there is no disease, injustice, loneliness or any other forms of involuntary suffering. All humans are very kind, intelligent, just, inquisitive, honest and compassionate. Everyone leads virtuous and meaningful lives, and pursues a variety of artistic, scientific or spiritual projects. If asked, everyone would say that they are completely satisfied with life and feel very happy, every day. If you think that some pains or challenges are required for living a good life, please imagine that these humans experience such things. The second planet, “planet dystopia”, is inhabited by 1 miserable human who experiences extreme pain and discomfort in his/her whole body. This human is unable to move and suffers from extreme anxiety and depression. There is nothing this person can do to distract himself/herself or to alleviate his/her suffering in any way. If asked, this human would answer that he/she is extremely miserable, every day. This person is unable to end his/her own life, but would immediately do so if given the chance. What is the smallest number of humans (N) who live on planet utopia, at which point you would press the button and bring both planets into existence? *
For the purpose of this thought experiment, please assume you know the following for sure: The number of humans on each planet will stay constant over time, and the two planets will exist for an equally long, finite period. The humans on planet utopia and the human on planet dystopia will never have contact with each other and don't know of each other's existence. The human on planet dystopia is innocent. Neither planet will ever be overpopulated. Generally, your decision will have no relevant effects on, for example, animals, the environment, humans on Earth, or anything else beyond the two planets.
Your answer
Have you read any of the following websites, blogs, and books? *
Please note that many successful applicants haven't read much of these websites, blogs or books.
None (0%)
Almost none (1 - 5%)
A bit (6 - 15%)
Some (16 - 50%)
A lot (51 - 100%)
foundational-research.org
givewell.org
80000hours.org
openphilanthropy.org
nickbostrom.com
intelligence.org
reducing-suffering.org
slatestarcodex.com
Nick Bostrom: Superintelligence
Peter Singer: Practical Ethics
Richard Dawkins: The Selfish Gene
Robin Hanson: The Age of Em
Eliezer Yudkowsky: Rationality from AI to Zombies ("The Sequences")
Please list other resources (e.g., books, essays, blogs, movies, podcasts, etc.) that have been highly influential to you. *
Your answer
Please leave any additional comments to support your application.
Your answer
Were some parts of this form unclear to you or are there any other open questions on your part?
(Leave blank if all questions in this form were formulated clearly and you don't have any open questions)
Your answer
Do you have any feedback for us?
Please also give feedback on the design or content of the application form itself if possible.
Your answer
Please confirm that you permit us to follow up the references provided in your CV. *
Please send your CV to contact@foundational-research.org
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