Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Academics Stand Against Poverty (ASAP) launch at Yale University

Call for Proposals: “Impact: Global Poverty” (YALE)

Academics Stand Against Poverty Launch Conference at Yale (April 23rd, 11am-6pm)

We invite you to submit your proposal for a project aimed at reducing world poverty.

Selected proposals will receive a slot in the upcoming conference and be carried out with the support of the Academics Stand Against Poverty network and organization.

Background: Academics Stand Against Poverty, or ASAP, is a new organization in which academics collaborate in order to have a greater impact on issues of global poverty. Its aim is to help academics leverage their expertise on such issues by making effective interventions in public debates, by supporting good work by international agencies and non-governmental organizations, and by launching real-world projects aimed at realizing positive change. For more information go to:

The conference: On April 23rd we will hold our launch conference at Yale University. In the conference we will present two ongoing projects, "Health Impact Fund" and "Climate Voices", and discuss selected proposals for new ASAP projects. The discussion will be led by a panel of leading academic activists who will pass their experience and insight to the new ASAP project leaders. Among the confirmed speakers and panelists are: Anat Biletzki (Tel-Aviv University), Gerry Mackie (Princeton), Thomas Pogge (Yale), James Silk (Yale) and Mary Evelyn Tucker (Yale).

Call for proposals: This is an open call for contributions of up to 1,500 words outlining a project proposal that academics might initiate with good prospects of reducing world poverty. Guidelines and examples of proposals that are well on their way toward implementation are listed below. All proposals are due by April 7th.

Selected proposals will be posted on the ASAP website for open discussion. Following this, all proposal submitters will be invited to vote for the best of these proposals. These chosen proposals will become the next ASAP projects, will be presented and discussed in the launch conference, and shared-interest groups will be formed to take them forward. If your proposal isn't selected you will be invited to join one of the teams working on a selected proposal.

Becoming an ASAP project means benefitting from the support of the international ASAP network, having a page on the website and being able to raise funds through our non-profit organization.

All those, including faculty, graduate or undergraduate students, working on aspects of global poverty, global justice and related issues are invited to submit proposals and attend the meeting. You need not submit a proposal to attend, and broad participation will be encouraged

To submit a draft proposal, or if you have any questions, please contact: Gilad Tanay (Yale University, Philosophy Department)

Examples of proposals or efforts underway:

1. Giving What We Can (Toby Ord, Oxford University):

2. Clean Trade in Natural Resources (Leif Wenar, King’s College, London)

3. Health Impact Fund (Thomas Pogge, Yale University)

4. Climate Voices (Maximilian Webster and Gilad Tanay, Yale University)

Guidelines for writing a proposal

Your project proposal should clearly describe the real-world change the project aims for and the effects this change would have on global poverty. It should also describe the academic and political efforts through which a suitably composed group of academics could achieve the envisioned change.

In writing your proposal we recommend that you keep the following questions in mind:

1. What is the aim of your project? Why is this aim valuable? Why is it more valuable than other aims that could be achieved at the same cost?

2. Why, morally speaking, ought people to invest resources in this project?

3. What means are you proposing to achieve your aim?

4. How practical is your proposal? Is it feasible? Is it cost effective? Is it sustainable? Is it reproducible?

5. Try to address ethical consideration. For example: does this project worsen the condition of some in order to benefit others? If so, what is the justification for this?

6. How do you propose to build a team that will implement this project? What resources do you have and what resources will you need to move this project forward? How do you envision that this will take place?
7. Who else is working on this issue? How will your work combine, interact and benefit from the work done by others?

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