The blog can be found here: https://damienlaird.substack.com/
It's already well underway, and is exclusively focused on figuring out how to better forecast things related to global catastrophic risks. I'm treating the project as equal parts live journal and blog, as much dedicated to thinking out loud as I try and figure out how to have the most impact I can in this area as it is to directly sharing useful information.
So far I've written research summaries on relevant topics, theorized about areas for improvement, and even done a hypothetical case study on how internal forecasting at Open Philanthropy could be improved. I participated in a GCR focused forecasting tournament in 2022 that I think was quite novel and interesting, and on March 1st I'll be able to post all my forecasts and a post mortem. Both of those posts are already written. Moving forward, I'm focusing much more on the meta level question of how to improve forecasting vs. actually doing forecasting, but some forecasting will likely still be useful to test various things.
This is a pretty focused blog and I'm definitely not pursuing any kind of popular appeal. It's never intended to be a revenue source, no content will ever be paywalled, and it will remain focused on this particular (very) niche topic.
What is your track record on similar projects?
I have been following the forecasting world for roughly a couple years just out of naïve interest. In that time I was also searching for a field where I could have an impact on mitigating global catastrophic risks as a set, vs. focusing on any one in particular. I have been volunteering with The Consilience Project, networking, and just in general attempting to learn more about GCRs and potential mitigation strategies. After participating in a forecasting tournament in this area, and digging into the supporting research, I realized that advancing the art of forecasting in this direction is likely the focus area I've been looking for. To date, my track record is participation in that tournament ($4500 in rewards so far, selected by team for best forecasts and best comments) and what I've published on my blog already. I think the blog has also kick-started a relationship that could translate into a more tangible project improving the sensemaking/research space around GCR forecasts, but it's still too early to say or to pursue funding for that.
How will you spend your funding?
The blog has no overhead. Occasionally I might purchase access to academic papers, but so far I've been able to avoid that. The funding is mostly to incentivize me to work on this project versus other uses of this time. I have an unrelated full-time job, and all of this work is a hobby for me right now. If I receive this funding, I'm committing to average 1 blog post per week between receiving funding and September (~24 posts). I will strive to make these posts as useful as possible for advancing this topic.
I'm also hoping that participating in this funding round can highlight my blog to the (likely rare) individuals out there interested in sharing feedback on it or collaborating on related projects. Please don't hesitate to reach out on Twitter if that's you! I'm @Damien_Laird there.