This post is part of our monthly activity update series. Each activity update briefly describes what we’ve been up to in the last month and, hopefully, helps to shed light on how our priorities shift over time. Note that some of our time each month will be spent investigating future project opportunities that may not be covered in these posts until our plans are more solid.

This post covers two months, February and March. We did not previously post an update in February due to other project priorities and travel.


  • Our Grants Program awarded the following grants:

  • We supported the creation of the Bay Area X-risk Community Initiative (BAXCI). You can read more about what BAXCI is in our announcement.

  • Our core staff traveled to the UK to convene with the Future of Humanity Institute (FHI) and the Centre for the Study of Existential Risk (CSER). Our broad goals for this trip were to 1) increase our awareness of opportunities to support these research institutions and others, 2) improve our ability to communicate and collaborate with individuals at FHI and CSER, and 3) inspire our core staff to “get stuff done” for the x-risk ecosystem. We believe all three of these goals were met.

  • We hired five contractors to assist us in supporting two of our partners, FHI and CSER. These contractors are working in a variety of areas, including: mathematical modeling, research, writing and editing, graphic design, communications, website maintenance, and the development of a new academic program.

  • We hosted an event on March 31st at the CFAR office to help FHI gather data for its collaboration with Ought on a project to help build systems that predict human preferences after deliberation.

  • BERI held its first board meeting of 2018. Due to BERI’s rapid growth over the last year, we decided to convene board meetings on a quarterly basis going forward.

  • Internally, we developed our first official Fiscal Operating Procedures to improve clarity about BERI’s financial processes both for ourselves and for external reviewers.


  • We were unable to expedite setting up the financials of the BERI Support Fund, thereby losing a significant amount of potential funding we had hoped it might receive early this year.

Works in Progress

We are…

  • Exploring the possibility of assisting highly x-risk-motivated persons with applying to the European Commission’s newly created High-Level Expert Group on Artificial Intelligence.

  • Working to set up several grant and award programs, targeting different potential x-risk-motivated recipients.

  • Hiring for additional Project Managers, and a Program Investigator and Manager position. You can learn more about each position at our jobs page.

  • Assisting BSF in applying for non-profit status and other legal and operational set-up tasks.

  • Finalizing our 2017 financial statements in preparation for our upcoming annual financial audit.

  • Evaluating the possibility of setting up an organization in the UK to run BERI-like activities for our partners across the ocean.

  • In the process of investigating several new grants.