Dr. Dorte Bratbo Sørensen, Associate professor in laboratory animal science at University of Copenhagen
Same-same but different? The 3Rs and Animal Welfare
Time: Tuesday, November 20th, 12.30-13.30
Location: Keldur, library at Institute for Experimental Pathology, University of Iceland, Keldnavegur 3, 112 Reykjavík
ABSTRACT: Often implementation of the 3Rs is considered the overall way of improving animal welfare in research; but in reality the 3Rs are merely a moral and legal guideline with no underlying ethical justification. Moreover, the 3Rs as a concept do not define animal welfare per se and hence it is not possible to argue if the 3Rs in itself (in the original version presented by Russell and Burch in 1959) do in fact increase animal welfare. Adhering to the 3Rs simply aim to decrease animal suffering – and we need to discuss if just decreasing suffering is enough or if we are morally obligated to do more. In this talk, the limitations of the 3R as an animal welfare tool is discussed together with examples of animal welfare definitions. The main key point of the talk is that if we will improve the lives of experimental animals, we need to go beyond the 3Rs and find ways to do more than just diminish suffering in our animals. We need to actively introduce ways of management and technical work that will add positively to the world experienced by the animals. Examples of such actions will be presented.
BIOSKETCH: Dorte Bratbo Sørensen is an associate professor in laboratory animal science at University of Copenhagen. She is a Danish veterinarian and holds a PhD in Ethology and Animal Welfare. Since 2001 she has been lecturing on a variety of topics within the laboratory Animal Science field with the main focus on animal behavior, animal welfare and animal ethics.