The Effective Institutions Project is a global working group of academics, philanthropic leaders, businesspeople, and policymakers striving to determine the best ways to improve the quality of decision-making at important institutions.

Learn More

Why it matters

Institutions exercise great power over our lives, both today and far into the future.

Yet on issues from COVID to climate change, our leaders too often misjudge risks, make choices based on political expediency, and fail to imagine wiser alternatives when it counts the most.

We need our institutions to do better.
Our lives may literally depend on it.

People walking around in an indoors shopping mall

What we do

We analyze how and in what ways institutions’ decisions influence people’s lives.

We study how key institutions currently make decisions.

We identify interventions that might cause those institutions to take actions that lead to better global outcomes.

We connect interdisciplinary stakeholders to facilitate the most promising interventions.


Emma Belcher
Veteran grantmaker in nuclear security; CEO, Ploughshares Fund

Lewis Bollard
Farm Animal Welfare Program Officer, Open Philanthropy

Yordanos Eyoel
Democracy entrepreneur, Founder and CEO of Keseb

Nancy Hey
Executive Director, What Works Centre for Wellbeing

John Lavis
Directs the WHO’s Collaborating Centre for Evidence-Informed Policy

Andrea Ordóñez
Director, Southern Voice

Dave Orr
Board chair, David and Lucile Packard Foundation

Nitin Pai
Founding Director, Takshashila Institution

Dan Perez
Director, North America, SRI Executive

Jaan Tallinn
Philanthropist and investor; founder of Skype

Alex Toma
Executive Director, Peace and Security Funders Group

Jenny Xiao
Expert on US-China relations and emerging tech


Ian David Moss
Founder and Executive Director

Ella McIntosh
Chief of Staff

Conrad Helminger
Research & Operations Associate

James Scoggins
Senior Strategist

Collaborators and Affiliates: Jacob Arbeid, Shahar Avin, Red Bermejo, Amanda El-Dakhakhni, Michele Giunti, Tim Hwang, David Manheim, David Norman, Philip Reiner, Kartik Sharma


80,000 Hours logo
The David & Lucile Packard Foundation logo
Effective Giving logo
Founders Pledge logo
Global Commission on Evidence logo
Initiative on Apex Court Appointments logo
Longview Philanthropy logo
Metaculus logo
Rethink Priorities logo
Schmidt Futures logo