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Overview of Centers and Institutes for Human-Animal Interaction in the United States

By Marguerite E. O'Haire, Jessica Bibbo, Christy L. Hoffman, Megan K. Mueller, Zenithson Y. Ng, Virginia A. Buechner-Maxwell

Category Journal Articles

Academic centers and institutes represent critical hubs for the advancement of areas of scholarly and societal interest. We conducted a survey of 16 academic centers and institutes for human-animal interaction (HAI) in the United States to systematically document the current state of academic interest and investment in the field. Areas of focus included demographics, research, engagement, and education. Results indicated a substantial growth of new centers since 1977, particularly over the past decade. Research topics focused primarily on companion animals (largely dogs, cats, and horses) and adults. Engagement efforts centered around online outreach and in-person programming, with 75% of centers providing animal-assisted intervention services. Education opportunities included degrees at the undergraduate (13%), Masters (50%), and Doctoral (25%) level with courses offered in 63% of centers. The growth and productivity of academic centers and institutes for HAI provides evidence for the growing academic influence of the burgeoning field of HAI. The infrastructure these centers provide will be essential in supporting larger-scale research projects, promoting interdisciplinary and community-based research, and educating future leaders of the field.

Date 2018
Publication Title Human-Animal Interaction Bulletin
Volume 6
Issue 3
Pages 3-22
ISBN/ISSN 2333-522X
Language English
Additional Language English
Cite this work

Researchers should cite this work as follows:

  1. Academics
  2. Education
  3. engagement
  4. Human-animal bond
  5. Human-animal interactions
  6. open access
  7. peer-reviewed
  8. Research
  9. research institutes
  1. open access
  2. peer-reviewed