The Happier Lives Institute (HLI) connects donors, researchers, and policymakers with the most cost-effective opportunities to increase global wellbeing. Using the latest subjective well-being data, we identify the problems that matter most to people and find evidence-based ways to solve them.
How would you spend $10 million a year or more to improve global wellbeing?
The Grants Strategist will build a portfolio of large-scale, cost-effective funding opportunities to make people happier. So far, the Happier Lives Institute has focused on evaluating the cost-effectiveness of small-scale interventions, but now we’re starting to expand our scope to identify larger funding opportunities that can be delivered at scale.
Key roles and responsibilities
We’re looking for someone with the skills and experience to create a portfolio of opportunities that could be funded by large grantmakers and/or a new Global Wellbeing Fund that we might start (see similar examples here). You will establish our process for identifying and evaluating a wide range of interventions and grant proposals, investigate the most promising options, and make the final recommendations. We expect the portfolio will contain a mix of evidence-based “safe-bets” and potentially high-impact, but high-risk “hits-based” opportunities.
You’ll be approaching this project with two new perspectives. First, whilst funders often think about impact in terms of economic and health outcomes, you’ll focus more directly on improving subjective wellbeing. Second, you’ll take a broader approach, considering what could be done in both lower- and higher-income countries to most effectively increase wellbeing. This role is not just an opportunity to set the direction for HLI’s work, but to set new standards for the entire philanthropic community.
Experience and skills
- Dedication to conducting high quality, impactful research and working to improve global wellbeing.
- Relevant professional experience in designing grant-making processes and monitoring, particularly within international development.
- The ability to approach a problem from multiple angles and use data to inform your views and assumptions, as well as quantify difficult tradeoffs.
- Strong analytical and critical thinking skills, especially the ability to quickly grasp complex issues, sceptically evaluate claims, and make recommendations based on rigorous analysis.
- Excellent communication skills, particularly in writing, including the ability to clearly describe your reasoning, findings, and uncertainty.
- Able to take responsibility and ownership for the outcome of a task.
- A problem-solving mindset that favours evidence-based reasoning and critical thinking.
- Comfort with contacting subject matter experts by phone and email.
Desired skills and experience We don’t expect you to have all the skills and experience on this list. Plus, we want you to learn new skills in this role. If you are on the fence, please err on the side of applying:
- Strong strategic planning skills and direct experience working on strategic planning for an effective altruism-aligned organisation.
- Familiarity with the well-being science literature.
- Past research experience, especially related to global health and wellbeing.
- Experience assessing technical proposals for future research, either formally (e.g. through serving on grantmaking panels or research management roles in the industry) or informally (e.g. through discussing research ideas with colleagues and giving opinionated advice).
- Some knowledge of descriptive as well as inferential statistics and an aptitude for mathematical reasoning.