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News Release: Major New Review of Ethics of Animal Testing Research

3rd December 2013

A new review of the ethics of the use of animals in research is being pioneered by an international group of academics.

The rigorous academic document — one of the first to address the ethics of animal testing at length — will be produced by a Working Group of 18 international academics from six countries under the leadership of the Revd Professor Andrew Linzey, Director of the Oxford Centre for Animal Ethics.The Working Group includes ethicists, philosophers, scientists and lawyers (see list below).

Professor Linzey, said: “During the past thirty years, there has been a paradigm shift in ethical thinking about our treatment of animals.  From being regarded as things, tools, machines or resources for us – animals are increasingly regarded as sentient beings with their own inherent value, dignity and rights. Given this paradigmatic change spurred on in no small part by academic ethicists, philosophers and theologians, we believe that the time is right for a new ethical assessment of our use of animals in research.”

The project is the result of collaboration between the Oxford Centre and the animal protection society, the BUAV (

The BUAV’s CEO, Michelle Thew, said: “The BUAV is delighted to collaborate with the Oxford Centre for Animal Ethics on this pioneering project. While the use of animals in experimentation is being increasingly questioned across the moral and ethical spectrum, it is fitting that a new review of our use of animals in research should be carried out.”

“It is much to the BUAV’s credit that they are prepared to commission independent academic work in this controversial area” commented Professor Linzey.

Notes to editors:

1. The Oxford Centre for Animal Ethics is an independent centre founded in 2006 by its director, Professor Linzey. It is the first in the world dedicated to pioneering ethical perspectives on animals through academic research, teaching, and publication. The Centre comprises a fellowship of more than 70 academics worldwide from a range of disciplines.

2. The BUAV, with a history of over 100  years, is one of the oldest and most widely respected organisations in the field of animal protection. It is an authority on animal testing issues and is frequently called upon by governments, media, corporations and official bodies for its advice and expert opinion.

3. Below are the members of the Working Group. All write in their individual capacity

Dr Aysha Akhtar, MD, MPH
is a neurologist and public health specialist. She works for the Office of Counterterrorism and Emerging Threats of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Professor Mark H. Bernstein, PhD
holds the Joyce and Edward E Brewer Chair in Applied Ethics at Purdue University.

Dr Darren Calley, PhD
is a Lecturer of Law at the University of Essex and Director of the University’s Animal Welfare and Wildlife Law undergraduate programme.

Professor Jodey Castricano, PhD
is an Associate Professor of English and Cultural Studies, University of British Columbia (Okanagan), Canada.

Professor Grace Clement, PhD
is a Professor of Philosophy at Salisbury University, Maryland.

Dr Lydia de Tienda, PhD
is currently a JSPS postdoctoral research fellow, Department of Philosophy at Hokkaido University, Japan.

Professor Natalie Evans, PhD
is Sessional Lecturer and Professor in the Department of Media Studies, University of Guelph-Humber and the Department of Philosophy, University of Guelph.

Professor Lawrence A. Hansen, MD
is Professor of Neuroscience and Pathology at the University of California, San Diego.

Professor Lisa Johnson, PhD, JD
is an Associate Professor at the University of Puget Sound, where she teaches environmental law and animal law.

Dr Les Mitchell, PhD
is the Director of the Hunterstoun Centre of the University of Fort Hare, South Africa.

Dr Katherine Morris, PhD
is Fellow in Philosophy at Mansfield College, University of Oxford.

Dr Kay Peggs, PhD
is Reader in Sociology in the Faculty of Humanities, and the Social Sciences Research Degrees Co-ordinator, University of Portsmouth.

Professor John Simons, PhD, FRSA
is Executive Dean of Arts at Macquarie University, Sydney.

Jordan Sosnowski, JD
Is a Juris Doctor from Monash University currently working in the field of legal research.

David Spratt, FLS (Lond), FIBMS
is Manager of the Department of Cellular Pathology for the North Middlesex University Hospital NHS Trust.

Frances Robinson, MRCVS
is a veterinarian and a philosopher.

Professor Mark Rowlands, DPhil
is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Miami, Florida.

Clifford Warwick, FSB
is an independent consultant biologist and medical scientist, whose current main role is as senior scientific advisor to the Emergent Disease Foundation (UK).