Fifth Annual Meeting of the AWRN – CANCELLED

Date: 02/07/2020

University House (Business School) University of Birmingham



After careful consultation regarding the health and safety of everyone involved, the difficult decision has been made to cancel the Fifth Annual Meeting of the AWRN, due to take place on 2nd to 3rd July 2020 in Birmingham. 

Following increased concerns about the COVID-19 virus, we felt this was the best way to proceed due to this unprecedented global situation. We are very disappointed that we are unable to hold the event, especially as for the first time we were running it alongside the UFAW Meeting, but we are confident it’s the right decision based on the information we have today.


We are considering all options, including rescheduling at a later date or hosting an alternative online event, depending on how the pandemic evolves. Do let us know if you have any good ideas of ways the network can keep working for you! 

The meeting was going to include the following topics, we hope to bring these to you at a later date in one format or another. 

Day 1
Two topics were going to be highlighted during the first day of the meeting, the first being “Using Principles from Behavioural Ecology to Address Applied Animal Welfare Issues“. This session was going to include a joint plenary from Gareth Arnott (QUB) and Simon Turner (SRUC) talking about their BBSRC-funded project on aggression in pigs. 

The second highlighted topic was going to be “One Welfare“, with a plenary from Rebeca Garcia Pinillos (Defra / One Welfare) which was going to explore the links between human welfare, environmental welfare and animal welfare (not including zoonotic diseases). It was aiming to tackle the question of how does or can good animal welfare benefit human welfare, environmental welfare and sustainability. We also hoped to hold a workshop on this topic later in the day to promote discussion around the subject. 

The final session was going to be on “New Developments in Animal Welfare Science“, enabling you to present any recent work in the field. Feedback has suggested that delegates prefer short talks to poster sessions, therefore we were including an option for elevator pitches in any of the topic areas. This would give people the perfect opportunity to present ideas they were just starting to explore, pilot study results or requests for collaborations. In addition there was going to be speed networking and breakout groups (topics TBC).
Day 2
The second day of the meeting was going to be a Grant Writing and Reviewing Workshop with support from BBSRC. This would have included a morning of talks providing an insight into the grant review process, what makes applications successful and how to deal with unsuccessful applications. The afternoon was going to consist of mock panel committees, where delegates experience the process for themselves.

We last ran this 3 years ago and the feedback was incredibly positive, one delegate said: “The workshop was really useful for focussing future applications, especially better understanding the scoring and ranking process and realising how little time is available for introducing and considering each application at Committee”. Further information about the workshop on which this will be based can be found here

The date and venue were selected to allow delegates to combine our meeting with that of the UFAW Recent Advances in Animal Welfare Science VII Meeting taking place at the same venue on Wednesday 1st July, this meeting has also been cancelled. More information about the UFAW Conference and procedures for those already registered can be found here