These resources cover a wide range of topics: laws governing animal experimentation, professional standards for assuring animal welfare, the utility of animals for medical research, animal welfare advocacy, alternatives to animal models, and animal studies. At the end is a selected archive of articles on ethical issues in animal research from the Hastings Center Report.
Office of Laboratory Animal Welfare
Office of Extramural Research
National Institutes of Health
This office provides guidance and interpretation of the Public Health Service (PHS) Policy on Humane Care and Use of Laboratory Animals, supports educational programs, and monitors compliance with the policy by institutions and PHS funding components to ensure the humane care and use of animals in PHS-supported research, testing, and training, thereby contributing to the quality of PHS-supported activities.
Animal Welfare Information Center
United States Department of Agriculture, National Agricultural Library
This center is mandated by the Animal Welfare Act to provide information for improved animal care and use in research, testing, teaching, and exhibition. The goal of its products, services, and activities is to help the regulated community with employee training and to promote the humane care and use of animals by providing information on methods to replace animals, reduce their use, or minimize their pain and distress.
This is an information resource for members and staff of institutional animal care and use committees (IACUCs). They are self-regulating entities required by federal law to be established by institutions that use laboratory animals to oversee and evaluate all aspects of the institution’s animal care and use program. IACUC.org is produced by the American Association for Laboratory Science, an organization dedicated to education and the advancement of responsible laboratory animal care and use.
Association for Assessment and Accreditation of Laboratory Animal Care International
This private, nonprofit organization promotes the humane treatment of animals in science through voluntary accreditation and assessment programs. Accredited research programs demonstrate that they go beyond meeting the minimum standards of animal welfare required by law in animal care and use.
National Association for Biomedical Research
This lobby group on behalf of the biomedical research community advocates for “sound public policy in support of ethical and essential animal research.” Its resources express concern about animal rights advocacy and laws that might severely restrict or prohibit research on animals.
The site is a public information initiative of The Kavli Foundation, the Gatsby Charitable Foundation, and the Society for Neuroscience – global nonprofit organizations working to advance brain research. It has educational resources that explain why animals are needed for neuroscience research and why much of this research is difficult or impossible to do with alternative methods.
Animal Welfare Advocacy
The Humane Society of the United States
The Humane Society is dedicated to helping all animals – from animals in laboratories to pets at home. It promotes the use of alternative models to experimentation and calls for ending the most inhumane research practices. It strives to gain stronger legal protection for animals used in research and seeks to limit the animal use and suffering.
American Anti-Vivisection Society
The American Anti-Vivisection Society works to end the use of animals in research and promotes the use of animal research alternatives.
The Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing
This nonprofit center is dedicated to improving health for both people and animals. It promotes humane science by supporting the creation, development, validation, and use of alternatives to animals in research, product safety testing, and education. It seeks to effect change by working with scientists in industry, government, and academia to find new ways to replace animals with non-animal methods, reduce the numbers of animals necessary, or refine methods to make them less painful or stressful to the animals involved.
Alternatives Research and Development Foundation
The Alternatives Research and Development Foundation funds and promotes the development, validation, and adoption of non-animal methods in biomedical research, product testing, and education.
National Library of Medicine ALTBIB
This portal of the National Library of Medicine provides citations to articles that contain information about alternatives to the use of live vertebrates in biomedical research and testing. Many of the citations provide access to free full text.
This emerging field of scholarship draws on the humanities, social sciences, and sciences to explore the relationship between human and non-human animals and its multifaceted effects on the world. Those effects include questions raised about the moral status of animals and the implications for ecology, public health, and law. A number of academic institutions have recently established programs in animal studies.
Animals and Society Institute
This independent research and educational institute works to enhance understanding of the complex relationships between humans and other animals and promote stricter animal protection laws. It edits two academic journals devoted to the subject (Society and Animals and the Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science) and works with scholars and institutions nationwide to develop courses, minors programs, and more. It also has a directory of online courses on animal studies http://www.animalsandsociety.org/pages/has-online-courses .
Animal Studies at Michigan State University
This umbrella program focuses on the interdisciplinary study of the relationship between humans and other animals. The program includes a doctoral and master’s graduate specialization, cutting-edge research, a monthly seminar series on the MSU campus, and a registered student organization that connects academic initiatives with the local community.
Animality Studies at Colorado State University
Diverse projects within animality studies explore issues such as: the implications of how animals and animality are represented in literary and cultural texts; the distinctions various people make between humanity and animality; the ethics of relationships between humans and animals, including the impact of environmental problems on animals; the history of how people have thought about animality at different times and places; and the politics of various kinds of animal advocacy.
Humane Society University
This is a private, nonprofit institution with two learning environments that focus on human-animal interactions. The College of Arts and Sciences offers undergraduate degrees, graduate certificates, and graduate degrees. The School of Continuing Education provides a variety of professional development and personal enrichment topics in human-animal studies, law enforcement and disaster response training, animal shelter management and human resource leadership development.
New York University’s Animal Studies Initiative
The Animal Studies Initiative promotes and supports research and teaching in animal studies by administering an undergraduate minor in the field and sponsoring public events and workshops.
Wesleyan Animal Studies
Wesleyan describes this field as being of “critical importance today as the complex, but fragile interdependence of all life becomes increasingly apparent, and as scholars, artists, and activists seek ways to understand and enhance the lives of all animals. Wesleyan Animal Studies fosters scholarship on human-animal relations from a range of disciplinary and interdisciplinary perspectives.”
Hastings Center Archive
These selected articles from the Hastings Center Report capture the evolution of the debate over the use of animals in research over the last three decades. The first article was published in 1985, when criticism of animal research policies was gaining ground. Several philosophers, led by Peter Singer, Tom Regan, and Bernard Rollin, had begun to question the way in which laboratory animals were used. Animal activists were breaking into laboratories to free animals and circulate videos of experiments that inflicted harm on animals. Research organizations defended their practices, and state organizations were established in support of animal research. The debate on animal research then entered a new phase, with an examination of the biological and philosophical meaning of animal pain and suffering, the moral status of animals, and justifications for using animals in research. Four years later, in 1990, a special supplement explored these issues in greater detail. The supplement, the outcome of a two-year Hastings Center project, laid out a the spectrum of views on the moral status of animals, raised questions on the justification of the use of animals in scientific research, and described the understanding of animal suffering at that time. It also detailed the challenges and controversies surrounding institutional animal care and use committees (IACUCs) and surveyed the policy issues, including gaps in federal regulations. These articles reveal much that has changed over the last three decades in debates over the use of animals in research, as well as much that has remained the same.
Rethinking the Morality of Animal Research
Jerrold Tannenbaum and Andrew N. Rowan
Animals, Science, and Ethics
Strachan Donnelley and Kathleen Nolan, editors
- Introduction: The Troubled Middle In Medias Res
- Ethical Theory and the Moral Status of Animals
- Animals in Science: The Justification Issue
- Critical Anthropomorphism, Animal Suffering, and the Ecological Context
- Ethical Review and the Animal Care and Use Committee
- Policy Issues in the Use of Animals in Research, Testing, and Education
- Future Directions