The Jeanne Marchig International Centre for Animal Welfare Education (JMICAWE), is part of the University of Edinburgh's Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies.
Introduction to the Centre, Professor Cathy Dwyer
"Most people agree that a good education does not tell people what to think, but aims to give them the knowledge to think for themselves. Nowhere is this more important than in the emotionally charged subject of Animal Welfare. We may use our knowledge differently, and we may have different values ourselves, but we need to know the science underpinning it and the ethical views associated with it to make progress.”
Integrated within the R(D)SVS is the Jeanne Marchig International Centre for Animal Welfare Education, which is a venture with ambitious objectives committed to improving the health and welfare of animals through education, training, research and promoting the important role of veterinarians in protecting animal welfare, as well as supporting capacity building in animal welfare within various parts of the world.
The JMICAWE is a hub of expertise on animal welfare education, collaborating with international partners to advance understanding of animal welfare issues.
The Centre has an important role in improving the quality of life for animals through education and training. We know that by debating the issues, raising awareness of concerns and pushing the boundaries of what is considered acceptable across different borders we can make a positive impact for animal welfare today and in the future, both within and outside of the veterinary profession.
Edinburgh has a long tradition of delivery of high quality animal welfare research and postgraduate education, with the first Masters in Animal Welfare being developed in 1990, delivered by scientists working within the School of Agriculture, Roslin Institute and RDSVS. Since its official opening in May 2011, the JMICAWE has established itself as an internationally recognised hub of expertise in Animal Welfare Education, forming effective collaborative working relationships with a number of high profile animal welfare NGOs, reputable universities and professional bodies.
Currently the Centre works directly within the RDSVS, with UG and PG students, as well as with academic and NGO partners in Asia and South America and in collaboration with organisations and Universities in Europe and North America. Recently the Centre’s reach has increased significantly with the development of a new online international PG Masters programme, free online educational resources, signing of agreements for delivering animal welfare veterinary professional development in Commonwealth countries and developing closer links with influential organisations around the world.
Some of our collaborative projects include working with The Dogs Trust in developing veterinary surgeon’s clinical skills in Bosnia; working with Kerala Veterinary University to encourage the development of a Veterinary Nursing Training Programme and educating staff and students on how using a problem based approach in cases can greatly improve the animal welfare standards in India; and finally working with a variety of partners in Asia, such as Animals Asia, the Hong Kong SPCA and Chinese Veterinary Medical Association to educate qualified veterinary surgeons on animal welfare in China and to introduce new teaching methods to ensure that current students become aware of the importance of animal welfare.
As an animal welfare centre within a high profile university, we are in a unique position to act as world leaders in the development and delivery of accessible, credible and transformational education to those who will be able to influence and make positive changes to improve animal welfare globally.