Monday, November 27, 2006

Groundbreaking Think tank - The World's First Dedicated to Animal Ethics - To Launch Today; Goal To Open Debate On Issues Such As Animal Testing

Groundbreaking indeed. This should be a promising step and will likely lead to good changes. The leadership is also strong. The center will be run by the Rev Professor Andrew Linzey, “…an Anglican priest, writer and University of Oxford theologian, [who] is well known for his opposition to animal testing.”

In addition,

“More than 100 academics from 10 countries have been recruited as advisers to the centre, which has the full title Ferrater Mora Oxford Centre for Animal Ethics, after the Spanish philosopher, Jose Ferrater Mora, who spoke out against bullfighting in Spain.

Projects already underway include the introduction of a course in animal ethics and the publication of a Journal of Animal Ethics.”

Here is the goal of the center through the words of the director: “Prof Linzey said: "We must strive to ensure animal issues are highlighted and rationally discussed throughout society - we cannot change the world for animals without changing our ideas about them.”

"The centre will promote ethical attitudes and contribute to informed public debate."


Article:

Thinktank launched to debate animal ethics

http://education.guardian.co.uk/businessofresearch/
story/0,,1958262,00.html

Alexandra Smith and agencies
Monday November 27, 2006
EducationGuardian.co.uk

A thinktank claiming to be the world's first dedicated to animal ethics is to launch today, with the aim of fostering debate on controversial issues, such as animal testing.

The new animal ethics centre, launching online today, aims to "put animals on the intellectual agenda". The centre's director, the Rev Professor Andrew Linzey, an Anglican priest, writer and University of Oxford theologian, is well known for his opposition to animal testing.

His new project is expected to bring a more reasoned approach to the animal rights debate, including the controversial building of Oxford's animal testing laboratory.

The thinktank, which is to open its own centre in Oxford, opposes violence and illegal acts and distances itself from militant animal rights activists who advocate campaigns of violence and intimidation. One of the first issues of debate on its agenda is "the relationship between animal abuse and violence to human beings".

The new centre is not related to the University of Oxford.

More than 100 academics from 10 countries have been recruited as advisers to the centre, which has the full title Ferrater Mora Oxford Centre for Animal Ethics, after the Spanish philosopher, Jose Ferrater Mora, who spoke out against bullfighting in Spain.

Projects already underway include the introduction of a course in animal ethics and the publication of a Journal of Animal Ethics.

The construction of the £20m animal research laboratory at Oxford has been dogged with controversy.

In July 2004, the construction firm Montpellier pulled out after threatening letters were sent to its shareholders and its share price dropped. Work on the lab was suspended because of continuing threats of violence.

In the same month, the Animal Liberation Fund (ALF) admitted to an arson attack on the Hertford College boathouse and joined another animal rights group, Speak, in a campaign to target any organisations linked to the university.

Work started again on the lab in December last year, prompting Speak to begin demonstrations outside the building site, and in January a posting on the ALF website threatened violence against all staff and students at the university.

Since then staff and students have retaliated by forming their own group, Pro-Test, which has marched in support of the testing.

Prof Linzey said: "We must strive to ensure animal issues are highlighted and rationally discussed throughout society - we cannot change the world for animals without changing our ideas about them.

"The centre will promote ethical attitudes and contribute to informed public debate."

Pro-Test, the Oxford-based group that backs animal testing, welcomed Prof Linzey's centre.

A spokesman for Pro-Test said: "We understand that there are disagreements surrounding the area of animal rights, but we believe they should be solved through debate and discussion rather than through violence and intimidation,

"Further debate on whether animal research is justified is always going to be a good thing."

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