Training school WG1, 28-29 September 2023, Ljubljana, Slovenia

Training school WG1, 28-29 September 2023, Ljubljana, Slovenia

Key information

Dates: 28-29th September 2023
Location: University of Ljubljana, Biotechnical Faculty, Department of Animal Science, Groblje 3, Rodica, 1230 Domžale, Slovenia
Local Organiser: Manja Zupan Šemrov, University of Ljubljana, Biotechnical Faculty, Department of Animal Science, Domžale, Slovenia
Scientific Organiser: Jean-Loup Rault (WG1 Leader), University of Veterinary Medicine (Vetmeduni), Vienna, Austria
Participants: 54 trainees from 21 EU countries, including 11 COST Inclusiveness Target Countries.

Additional funding from the International Society for Applied Ethology, ISAE in collaboration with the Open Philantorphy Project, OPP, made it possible to welcome 30 Early Career Researchers from the ISAE East and South Europe region to attend this Training School. Information about this can be here

Training school summary

The very first LIFT training school was kicked-off on the 28th and the 29th of September 2023, near the capital of Slovenia, the ‘beloved’ city (literal translation of ‘Ljubljana’).

The venue of the training school was held at Rodica, outskirt of Ljubljana, where the Department of Animal Science of the University of Ljubljana is situated.

All the 52 participants from 22 EU countries were welcomed with their personalized name tags, which is made of the Slovenian national tree, linden tree, with the shape of its leaf: a heart.

During the ice breaking activity, participants were given a list of values in which they value most along the pathway of studying/working in animal welfare science. The goal of the activity was to talk with people and to find the participant(s) that shares the same value(s) with you as an animal welfare researcher. The examples of the common values are: ethics, collaboration, making a difference, teamwork, etc.

This training school was organized by WG1, in which the role is to define what positive animal welfare is. The training school therefore intended to explain positive animal welfare in four disciplines with four lectures: Day 1 in animal science (by Marek Špinka, Czech University of Life Sciences) and philosophy (by Sara Hintze, University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences Vienna), and Day 2 in social science (by Mara Miele, Cardiff University) and psychology (by Ruut Veenhover, Erasmus University Rotterdam). Each lecture was followed by a Q&A session and a group discussion.

 Participants were randomly allocated into 10 groups of the 10 welfare challenge in farmed animals. After each lecture, participants were asked to discuss their group topics and to present their results from the four disciplines mentioned above.

 The training school was wrapped up by a heart-warming choir performance of traditional Slovenian songs. It is a local senior men choir where one of the local professors of the department is the choir member.

 Social events were programmed on each evening in Ljubljana city center after the training school. The first evening was a get-together dinner at a Slovenian restaurant, and the second evening was a hand-crafted wooden boat river tour across Ljubljanica river.

 This two-day training school was a success. Fruitful discussions in defining what and how to measure positive animal welfare, as well as cultural exchange and social networking among people in the field of animal welfare science.

Thursday, 28th September, 2023
09:00 – 09:05Welcome by the local and scientific organizers
09:05 – 09:55Values exercise
10:00 – 13:00Plenary talk 1 (in-person) with group activity
10:00-10:45Marek Špinka, Animal Scientist: Biological basis of positive affective states
10:45 – 11:15Discussion with Marek Špinka
11:15 – 11:30Coffee break with coffee/tee
11:30 – 12:30Discipline 1 activity: Break-out in groups
12:30 – 13:00Each group reports on its slide about its topic from a biological point of view
Lunch served at the Campus
14:00 – 17:00Plenary talk 2 (online) with group activity
14:00 – 14:45Susane Monsó, Ethicist: For their own good? The unseen harms of disenhancing farmed animals
14:45 – 15:15Discussion with Susane Monsó
15:15 – 15:30Coffee break with coffee/tee
15:30 – 16:30 Discipline 2 activity: Break-out in groups
16:30 – 17:00Conclusions
Friday, 29th September, 2023
09:00 – 12:00 Plenary talk 3 (online) with group activity
09:00 – 09:45Mara Miele, Social Scientist: Happiness sells!
09:45 – 10:15Discussion with Mara Miele
09:45 – 10:15Coffee break with coffee/tee
10:30 – 11:30Discipline 3 activity: Break-out in groups
11:30 – 12:00Each group reports on its slide about its topic from a social science point of view
12:00 – 13:00Lunch served at the Campus
13:00 – 16:00Plenary talk 4 (online) with group activity
13:00 -13:45Ruut Vandeenoven, Psychologist: What can we learn from research on human quality of life?
13:45 – 14:15Discussion with Ruut Vandeenoven
14:15 – 14:30Coffee break with coffee/tee
14:30 – 14:30Discipline 4 activity: Break-out in groups
15:30 – 16:00Conclusions
16:00 – 17:00Summary, end of meeting


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