Brian May and academics to put Government under pressure to improve animal welfare at University of Leicester event

Posted by fi17 at Apr 17, 2012 10:50 AM |
Seminar will discuss Wildlife Conservation, Animal Welfare and Public Policy on Thursday 19 April
Brian May and academics to put Government under pressure to improve animal welfare at University of Leicester event

Brian May giving his talk.

Queen guitarist and animal welfare activist Brian May will introduce a national wildlife conservation seminar at the University of Leicester on April 19.

The rock star and astrophysicist, who also founded animal protection group Save Me, will attend the day-long seminar on Wildlife Conservation, Animal Welfare and Public Policy.

The event aims to identify the problems with current wildlife law and to find ways government policy and legislation can be reformed to improve animal welfare.

It will focus on both international issues and UK wild animal welfare policy.

The event has been organised by the University's Department of Politics and International Relations and the Centre for Animals and Social Justice, a new independent research centre focussed on animal protection public policy.

Fiona O'Donnell MP, the Shadow Minister for Natural Environment, and academics from around the country - including the prestigious Wildlife Conservation Research Unit at Oxford University - are also set to attend the event, along with policy makers and non-governmental organisations.

Organiser Professor Robert Garner, of the University's Department of Politics and International Relations, said: "In the UK, wildlife conservation and welfare issues such as hunting and the proposed badger cull are currently high on the public policy agenda.

"Globally, development often increases the stress on both habitats and wild animals themselves, so this seminar will make a crucial contribution to our understanding of these issues.

"We expect that the main message of the event will be that national and international policies are failing to reflect significant public interest in animal protection, resulting in harms to the welfare of wild animals that are highly controversial.

"Policy processes and legislation will need to be reformed so that animal welfare and public attitudes are given fair consideration instead of being marginalised.

"We believe having public figure like Brian May on board will further enhance the social impact of the seminar and help inspire academics and budding researchers because it will highlight the practical relevance of, and public interest in, this research field."

The day will feature talks from Professor Stuart Harrop of the University of Kent, Professor Rosaleen Duffy of the University of Manchester, Dr Keith Vincent of the UK Law Commission, Dr Angus Nurse of Birmingham City University, Dr Katy Wilkinson of Newcastle University and Dr Adam Spencer of the University of Nottingham.

The seminar will be held at the University's Stamford Hall, Manor Road, Oadby from 9.30pm on April 19.

CASJ conference
L to R: Rob Garner Professor of Politics, University of Leicester; Katy Wilkinson, DEFRA; Adam Spencer, University of Nottingham; Brian May, Save Me; Stuart Harrop, University of Kent; Angus Nurse, Birmingham City University.


Notes for editors:

For more information, please contact Dr Robert Garner at or on 0116 252 5346.

Report by Mark Cardwell

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