What we do
Our goal is to reduce the impact of science on animals and their welfare through developing more effective systems of ethical review; advancing implementation of all 3Rs; improving education and training; working to improve EU and UK legislation that regulates or creates a demand for animal use and monitoring its impact on animal welfare. Our specialist scientific staff work in a variety of ways to achieve these aims including:
Membership of a wide range of national and international committees and expert working groups, for example:
- Various European Commission expert working groups
- National Animals in Science Committee (in a personal capacity)
- The Boyd Group
Identifying opportunities to apply the 3Rs through engaging with scientists and researchers, animal technologists and care staff, vets and others in relevant roles; visiting establishments where animals are used; organising working groups and conferences. For example:
- Laboratory Animal Science Association (LASA) - Council, and the Education, Training and Ethics Section
- RSPCA/UFAW Rodent and Rabbit Welfare Group
- RSPCA/APHA initiatives on the welfare of wild animals and farm animals used in research
- RSPCA Expert Working Groups on severe suffering
Developing processes of ethical review, for example:
- Convening the new AWERB-UK forum (for all roles of AWERB member)
- Organising the annual AWERB Lay Members' Forum
- Working with LASA to produce Guiding principles on good practice for Animal Welfare and Ethical Review Bodies (2015) (PDF 1.76MB)
- Sitting on local Animal Welfare and Ethical Review Bodies at various UK establishments in industry and academia
- Running training courses on ethical review and the 3Rs in eastern Europe and east Asia
Inputting into consultations, both for government and non-governmental bodies, on a wide range of laboratory animal issues:
- Expert input into the development of European Directive 2010/63/EU regulating animal experiments and Council of Europe Convention ETS123 Appendix A on laboratory animal housing and care.
- Home Office - various consultations on the implementation of the Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act 1986 [as amended 2012].
Presentations at conferences and workshops:
Staff are also regularly invited to speak at conferences and run workshops around the world for government officials, regulators, scientists, animal carers, members of ethical review committees and others. These usually address topics such as animal welfare, ethics and legislation. Examples include:
- 9th World Congress on Alternatives and Animal Use in the Life Sciences.
- 13th Federation of European Laboratory Animal Science Associations (FELASA) congress.
- 4th Asian Federation for Laboratory Animal Science (AFLAS) congress.
- 3rd East Mediterranean International Council for Laboratory Animal Science (ICLAS) Symposium.
- Institute for Animal Technology (IAT) Congress 2016.
- Laboratory Animal Science Association (LASA) UK Winter Meeting 2016.