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Perspectives From the Science-Policy Interface in Animal Health and Welfare

By Simon J. More

Category Journal Articles

The aim of this paper is to present scientific perspectives from the science-policy interface in animal health and welfare, with an emphasis on factors critical to scientific effectiveness. While there is broad acceptance of the value of scientific information to inform policy-making, interactions at the science-policy interface are not without difficulties. The literature highlights the need for scientists to build policy relevance to the research focus from the outset, to engage with policy-makers and other stakeholders throughout, to use platforms to facilitate science-policy dialogue, and to disseminate research findings appropriately. In the author’s experience, there are a range of factors linked with effectiveness at the science-policy interface in animal health and welfare including a passion for public interest research, scientific independence, a commitment to scientific quality and openness, the opportunities afforded from partnership and collaboration, and an interest in strategic thinking and systems change. In an increasingly complex and rapidly changing world, an objective evidence base for policy decision-making is more important than ever. There is a need for particular attention to the value of collaboration between the natural and social sciences, a recognition among scientists and policy-makers that science is not value-free, the importance of effective communications, and the need to assess and communicate uncertainty. Further, there are particular challenges with science conducted in support of policy development for industry. It is hoped that this paper will stimulate and contribute to discussion and debate, both among scientists and between scientists and policy-makers, to increase scientific effectiveness at the science-policy interface in animal health and welfare.


Marcy Wilhelm-South

Purdue University

Date 2019
Publication Title Frontiers in Veterinary Science
Volume 6
Pages 7
DOI 10.3389/fvets.2019.00382
Language English
Additional Language English
Cite this work

Researchers should cite this work as follows:

  1. Animal health and hygiene
  2. Animal welfare
  3. open access
  4. Policy and Planning
  5. Science
  1. open access