Will research into digital sentience / the fundamental nature of consciousness get $10m+ from EA funders before 2030?
Basic
15
398
2030
61%
chance

Stuff that counts towards this:
- Funding traditional academic work in philosophy (a la David Chalmers) or neuroscience (a la fMRI studies), including research done using BCIs
- research about the possibility of AI sentience, or trying to find out whether brain emulations would be conscious (see this EA Forum tag)
- Qualia-Research-Institute-style psychedelics research

Stuff that doesn't count:
- MAPS-style psychedelics legalization advocacy or research for medical applications
- funding the development of BCIs in the first place, or other human-intelligence-augmentation technologies (this has its own market)
- research to advance the technical possibility of brain emulation (this has its own market) or do assorted technical AI work
- research that is exclusively about animal consciousness (research on insect sentience will be counted in the farmed-invertebrate-welfare market)

To resolve this question, in 2030 I will look at publicly-available grantmaking documentation (like this Openphil website, for example), adding up all the grants between October 2023 and January 2030 that support fundamental consciousness research, and resolve YES if the grand total exceeds ten million US dollars.

"EA funders" means places like OpenPhil, LTFF, SFF, Longview Philanthropy, Founders Fund, GiveWell, ACX Grants, etc. Some example "EA-adjacent" funding sources that wouldn't count, even if their money goes directly to this cause area: Patrick Collison, Yuri Milner, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Elon Musk, Vitalik Buterin, Peter Thiel. This is obviously a fuzzy distinction (what if one of the aforementioned billionares becomes noticeably more EA-influenced by 2030? etc), but I'll try my best to resolve the question in the spirit of reflecting how the EA community has grown over time.

For markets about other cause-area-candidates (like S-risks and space governance!), check out the "New EA Cause Area?" tag!

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