Science is not enough: how do we increase implementation?
Science has been invaluable for increasing understanding of animal welfare and as a result we know of many ways in which animal treatment and housing can be improved. However, implementation is slow because of political and economic considerations. This is particularly clear for farm animals. This raises the question of what else is needed, besides science, for implementation of welfare improvements. At least three other disciplines need more attention in this respect: sociology, economics and ethics. Scientists will continue to be central in achieving improvements in animal welfare by providing credible, authoritative information on animal welfare and other issues. But to increase implementation of their results they need to increase dialogue with all of the players involved — producers, retailers, consumers, legislators and the media — as well as with specialists in other disciplines to improve cross-disciplinary understanding.
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