Deciding which charities to support is a heavy responsibility. Who among us is really qualified to compare the moral worthiness of old people and children, trees and animals, cancer patients and diabetics, Indians and Haitians? Should the question of who is deserving be based on our personal preferences and prejudices alone? A movement called “effective altruism” is an increasingly popular solution to this quandary. We’re all familiar with utilitarianism—Jeremy Bentham’s notion that we should make decisions that result in the greatest good for the greatest number. Effective altruism, based on the ideas of philosopher Peter Singer, says we should apply a similar logic to philanthropy, allocating our money, time and other resources in a way that will measurably do the most good. The UK-based Centre for Effective Altruism suggests we This story is from Kinfolk Issue Thirty-Two Buy Now Related Stories Arts & Culture Issue 50 Close Knit Meet the weavers keeping traditional Egyptian tapestrymaking alive. Arts & Culture Issue 50 The Old Gays Inside a Californian TikTok “content house” of a very different stripe. Arts & Culture Issue 50 New Roots The Palestinian art and agriculture collective sowing seeds of community. Arts & Culture Issue 50 Angela Trimbur An all-out tour de force. Arts & Culture Issue 50 Peace & Quiet In the UK, a centuries-old Quaker meeting house encourages quiet reflection. Arts & Culture Issue 50 Free Wheelers On the road with London’s Velociposse Cycling Club.