Conference Title: ‘After the Election: Prospects for Animal Protection in the UK’
Time/Date: 9.30am-5.00pm, September 10th 2015
Location: The Foundry, 17 Oval Way, London SE11 5RR
The CASJ is hosting a landmark conference to examine the future of animal protection in the UK.
In the UK, General Elections are important windows of opportunity for movements such as animal protection that rely heavily on public opinion for political impact. The aftermath of the 2015 poll poses major challenges for the animal protection cause and provides a chance to pause and reflect on options for future progress. This landmark conference will be focussed on how to achieve positive animal protection impacts based on an understanding of the essential role of politics in achieving and securing change. You can read summaries of the talks here.
The Opening Address is to be given by Angela Roberts, CASJ co-founder and one of the most experienced animal advocates in Britain today, who will set out our analysis of the critical tasks faced by the animal protection movement.
Further speakers will include Professor Rob Garner (Leicester) and Lucy Parry (PhD researcher, Sheffield) who will present our ongoing research into the democratic representation of animals’ interests within political debates and processes, covering issues such as:
- the representation of animals in political debates, e.g. regarding hunting
- the potential impact of more ‘deliberative’ or ‘public participatory’ forms of democratic decision-making
Other experts scheduled to talk include:
- Simon Brooman, Senior Law Lecturer at Liverpool John Moores University, will analyse changes in legal education that could undermine consideration of ethical issues such as animal protection.
- Professor Neil Carter from University of York will talk about the successes and failures of environmental NGOs as they have striven to institutionalise effective climate change public policy, and teasing out vital lessons for the animal welfare movement to take on board.
- Dr Ruth Fox from the Hansard Society on the future of E-petitions, Early Day Motions and Private Members Bills and their potential role in transmitting public concerns on issues like animal protection into the political system.
- Jess Garland from the Electoral Reform Society and University of Sussex, who will be discussing her research into how electoral reform towards more proportionate voting systems could help spread political power more evenly and allow a wider range of voices, including those representing animals, to have influence over policy.
- Dr Angus Nurse from Middlesex University will look at how animal welfare principles can be integrated into law and public policy.
- Peter Stevenson, Chief Policy Advisor at Compassion in World Farming, on how to build on the Conservative Government’s manifesto commitments on farm animal welfare.
- Dr Joe Wills from the University of Leicester’s School of Law will be examining the various meanings of ‘unnecessary suffering’ and the vital need to change the weak version that the judiciary currently operates with.
A major aim of the conference is to make the knowledge of political scientists available to animal advocates and policy makers while, conversely, helping researchers’ projects to engage closely with real-world problems. The conference programme will be published in the near future, in the meantime, summaries of the talks can be perused here.