Chicago Rationality

Welcome to the homepage for the Chicago Rationality meet-up group. Our group includes people interested in Rationality, Effective Altruism, and more. Many people find us through weird corners of the internet like LessWrong, Slate Star Codex/Astral Codex Ten, Overcoming Bias,  Marginal Revolution, and other Rationalist-adjacent sites.

If you’re interested in hanging out in real life with other people interested in these kinds of ideas, attend our next meet-up! We typically do one “topical” meet-up per month focused on a specific reading suggested by a group member and one “social” meet-up per month with no particular agenda.

It’s ok to come if you’re not sure if you’ll fit in, if you’re not the “typical” kind of person who would attend a meet-up like this, or you’re just kind of intimidated by coming to a new social event. Feel free to reach out to us with any questions as well:

If you’d like to be notified of upcoming meet-ups and social events, please fill out the form below and you’ll be added to our mailing list. We usually send out emails a few times per month.


Click through on the event description for more details including address, suggested reading, etc.

You can also add this calendar to your calendar of choice


February 2020 Meetup: WEIRD Psychology and Kin Marriage

Topic for this meet-up will be the paper by Jonathan Schulz et al. discussing possible origins of WEIRD (Western, Educated, Industrialized, Rich & Democratic) psychology being tied to the Catholic Church’s restructuring of norms surrounding kin marriage. If you’re going to just read one thing, read Tanner Greer’s blog post

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December 2019 Meetup: Arrow’s Impossibility Theorem

Thanks Noah for suggesting the following readings & podcast! 1. 2. 3. 4.

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November 2019 Meetup: Going Critical – Phase Transitions in Social Behavior

1. On critical thresholds and cultural/scientific diffusion: 2. A second reference on critical thresholds (sorry for the self-reference but I’m rushing): 3. Look up the definition of “phase transition” [possible cool topic for future meeting—things that hover near criticality..]

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September 2019 Meetup: Free Will

Hey all—by some kind of emergent process, we have self-organized a topic for next meetup: Free Will. This is a VAST topic with a ton of writings. Any recommendations? Here are a few possibilities, H/T Shane with an addition by myself: a) Rationalist: Yukdowski (I’d grab the last few posts):

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Links and REsources

Looking for more internet to read? Curious about what Rationality groups talk about? Want to go go to other meetups in Chicago? Here are some helpful links: