Wednesday, 16 September 2015
Virtual Animal Welfare Discussion between Edinburgh and 8 Asian Country representatives
This week, JMICAWE Director, Prof Nat Waran, took part in a live online discussion with animal welfare lecturers working in various parts of Asia, who were attending a workshop hosted by the World Animal Protection.
The 4 day annual workshop held in Bangkok, brought together key drivers for animal welfare education, from veterinary schools in a range of countries, including; Vietnam, the Philippines, Malaysia, Indonesia, India, China and Taiwan. Using Skype, Prof Nat was able to pose a question related to the importance of using good evidence for underpinning effective animal welfare policy and legislation, and to consider how effective this would be for tackling an animal welfare concern relevant to the key driver's own country. The key drivers raised some interesting points, such as: the difficulties with separating ethical concerns from evidence based arguments and how public opinion led legislation may not always be best for animal welfare; the problem with having legislation that cannot be enforced and the concern that evidence from studies in other parts of the world addressing the needs of a species, is often disregarded in favour of more research being needed 'in country'. All issues that are relevant to others working towards changes to benefit animals.
Prof Nat Waran said 'It was really good to be able to interact with colleagues from different parts of the world to share ideas, knowledge and concerns, and to work towards an improved understanding of how we can mainstream animal welfare for education as well as for underpinning sound policy and practice'. With the use of modern technology, we can look forward to many more of these sorts productive interactions with colleagues all over the world'.