A few weeks ago we mentioned the Big Animal Research Debate, a joint initiative by the International Debate Education Association (IDEA) UK, and Understanding Animal Research (UAR) to organise a series of debates on animal research in the UK, US and Ireland, many streamed live on the internet. These universities included 7 of the UK’s top 10 universities, including Oxford, Cambridge, Imperial and UCL.
Well thirty debates later the student opinion is crystal clear. In the words of The Times Higher Education article:
“Students taking part in a huge nationwide debate have overwhelmingly disagreed with the notion of a full ban on animal testing in research”
The results were very clear. Every single university debating society involved rejected the motion to “ban all forms of animal research” (One institution’s results have not been submitted yet). 1,575 students voted to defend animal research, compared to 363 who voted for the ban (97 abstentions) – a ratio of around 4 to 1.
The debates ranged in scope, with many on the proposition team (those who wanted a ban) calling for a ban in 5, 10 or 20 years (rather than immediately). Arguments ranged from the very scientific, to the heavily philosophical, and all manner of mixtures between. Importantly, when all the information was from both sides was provided to students, most believed it was important for such methods to continue.
Watch a selection of the debates that were streamed online below:
University of Cambridge
University College London
University of Warwick
University of Manchester
Imperial College London
London School of Economics and Political Science
University of Liverpool
Speaking of Research