Conducting research is essential for identifying high-impact interventions and assessing the effectiveness of existing strategies. Unfortunately, the historical impact of research within the animal welfare space has been limited by poor quality studies, a lack of experienced researchers, and organizations’ lack of responsiveness to findings. In this report, we consider various approaches to animal welfare research and their prospects of being translated into positive impact for animals.
Are China and India the most promising countries for animal advocacy? A systematic country comparison
When considering a new charity to start, the question of which country to target is an important one. This post explains the process for prioritizing countries and how this system is applied to different countries.
Decision-making on which charities to establish involves certain complex processes. Part of this analysis is looking at the effectiveness of different approaches. Currently at Charity Entrepreneurship, I am analysing how promising the corporate outreach campaigns are in implementing the most promising asks. Coming from a cluster approach perspective, I analyse multiple groups of evidence, one of which is historical case studies. This post explains an analysis about the counterfactual impact of cage-free corporate campaigns in the US.
The following report is a part of ongoing research by Charity Entrepreneurship looking into corporate outreach as a potential approach used to implement asks.
You can download the full report here:
This report considers gene modification for farmed animals with a focus on improving their welfare
This ask report considers interventions for stocked fish and fish used for bait.
Fish stocking is the practice of raising fish to be put into wild areas, such as rivers, to supplement the natural population. Bait fish are those caught to be used as bait for other fish. These two practices are commonly neglected within the animal ethics movement, despite there being potentially a comparable or even larger amount of animals affected by these two industries than by other animal-based industries that we have considered in previous research. This is heightened further as fish are one of our priority animals. Our speculative estimates are that a successful intervention for bait fish could save ~25 Welfare Points per animal, and for fish stocking ~23 Welfare Points per animal.
This ask report considers humane slaughter and transportation methods with the aim of reducing suffering during particularly stressful events in animals’ lives.
This ask report considers the impact of increasing the price of meat products to reduce demand.
This ask report considers switching people’s consumption of chicken to beef.
This ask report focuses on improving the environmental conditions of factory farmed animals. Specifically, it is focused on improving management of dissolved oxygen levels for fish.
This ask report focuses on providing free or discounted contraceptives. Contraceptives are a well-known global poverty intervention, but in so far as they affect human population they also have major effects on the environment and animals. This report primarily considers the effect that a contraceptive charity could have on animals, although more extensive reports would consider the full range of benefits, including its effects on humans. The intervention ended up looking surprisingly impactful for animals, particularly if conducted in countries with high need for contraceptives and high fish and poultry consumption.
Ethical pest control
This ask report is focused on considering more humane pest killing and controlling mechanisms. There are possibly billions of rats and pest birds, as well as many other species of mammals and insects which are counted as pests. These animals are often killed non-humanely, and yet the animal advocacy movement has been relatively inactive within this problem. Few organisations have attempted to reduce the suffering of pests, and those that have did not scale up. Overall, a charity built around ethical pesticides seems moderately promising. This report considers various possible interventions and the crucial considerations involved.
High welfare meat
This ask report is focused on meat certified in programs that can make meaningful differences in animals’ lives. Having meat consumption switch to higher welfare meat could be more tractable than having people switch directly to veganism and, depending on your ethics, more important. This intervention can make animals go from net negative lives to lives worth living but it also brings a large number of crucial ethical and logistical considerations. We cover some of them in this summary report.
This ask report is focused on the food fortification of factory farmed animals’ feed. Micronutrient fortification is one of the most well established and cost effective interventions in global health, and all beings, including both humans and factory farmed animals, can benefit greatly from the right levels of micronutrients. Food fortification is an unusually direct and cost-effective way of addressing major sources of suffering (e.g. bone breaks in egg laying hens) and, overall, looks moderately promising. This report considers multiple micronutrients and supplements that could be added to an animal’s feed to increase its welfare.
Is it better to be a wild rat or a factory farmed cow? A systematic method for comparing animal welfare.
TLDR: We looked at a lot of different systems to compare welfare and ended up combining a few common ones into a weighted animal welfare index (or welfare points for short). We think this system captures a broad range of ethical considerations and should be applicable across a wide range of both farm and wild animals in a way that allows us to compare interventions.