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Why Join?

Build Trust

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  • Be part of an inclusive community that promotes support for science

  • Establish strong relationships with the public

  • Inform policy makers and the media

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Support Science

  • Showcase your institution's research

  • Demonstrate the connection between animal research and patient health

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Counter Claims

  • Highlight the standards of care for animals in research

  • Counter misinformation about animal research and the current state of alternatives

Openness about research involving animals is important.
It can....

Benefits
 
Benefits of Openness
Below are some positive outcomes that may result from increased openness about animal research:
Increased Morale: Publicly sharing institutional pride in the research program is empowering for all involved. A commitment to openness is also an acknowledgment of dedication among researchers, administrative staff, animal care teams, and students. Such validation is critical to maintain a high-quality program. Research community members who feel valued are more likely to report job satisfaction and are less likely to suffer from burnout or compassion fatigue.

Culture of Care: Openness is part of a culture of care, in which all persons in the research enterprise - from cage-wash to lead investigator - share an understanding of the importance of the work and are invested in improving the science and the wellbeing of the animals and people involved.

Increased Communication: Improved communication strategies as a result of openness can increase dialogue and collaboration. Visible support for animal research can empower researchers who are unsure about sharing their work to become more comfortable doing so.

Increased Visibility: Openness can create more opportunities for public dialogue by providing content for articles and social media posts, opening conversations at public outreach events, and so much more.

Improved Perception: Openness is a sign of strength. Openness provides critical context for the valuable work done at your institution and can allow for the correction of misconceptions and disinformation.

Higher Enrollment: Increased confidence in the caliber of an institution's research program and reputation can lead to higher enrollment and increased student involvement in research and advanced degrees.

Better Employee Recuitment: Including committments to animal welfare and good science on public facing websites help potential employees feel ethically aligned with the institution.

Increased Funding: Continual research improvement and increasing strength in your research program can provide a firm foundation for funding applications or attracting clients.

And more!

Please note: not every item may apply in every circumstance or every institution

Ideas

Implementation of Ideas

Practical application of the principles of openness will vary based on the needs of your institution, your community and your research program. Shared here are some ideas you may find useful.

 

Internally

Openness relies on a foundation of institutional pride. Ensure that your institution's research program is exemplary.

  • Create a strong communication system within your research community. Streamline processes that may impede internal communication and affect research efficiency.

  • If your institution does not already collect metrics, begin to gather data about grants, funding amounts, patents, clinical trials, number of animals needed, protocol volume, etc. Data provides the foundation for content that you will want to share.

  • Support staff to attend and present at conferences and other continuing education opportunties. It is critical to keep abreast of the field if your institution is committed to maintaining the highest standards of research as described in the principles of openness. Sharing your organization’s successes and learnings at a conference is also a form of openness as it demonstrates your pride in your work and allows others to benefit from your expertise. 

  • Prioritize animal research needs in your institution. Ensure that facilities needs in animal research areas are attended to with the highest priority. Maintain updated and modern facilities.

  • Support research staff and animal care teams in compensation, benefits, and recognition to a level commensurate with their critical role in the research program.

  • Streamline hiring procedures and ensure that staffing is sufficient to properly manage protocol volume and effectively support the IACUC.

  • Ensure that the IACUC is the proper size relative to your institution's research program. Ensure that members are fully engaged.

  • True change requires the commitment of financial resources. Prioritize animal research needs within the research and development budgets. A modern, high quality animal care program drives innovative, exceptional and ethical research.

Externally

True openness is about sharing your program with others and finding innovative ways to engage your external community in the important work you do.

  • Talk about YOUR research! Write about it, put it in your news, and feature it. Be proud of your extraordinary work.

  • Create an engaging and informative website. Add authentic images that showcase your unique program and team.

  • Build a relationship with your institution's office of public relations. Leverage their expertise in identifying and utilizing media channels to effectively share your message.

  • Connect with your institution’s government affairs leaders to stay abreast of legislative changes that could impact your research requiring animals.

  • Identify and collaborate with other institutions to identify strategies and insights.

  • Partner with local and national advocacy organizations for support and to remain informed on best practices or new opportunities for animal research communications and public engagement.

  • Connect with community research events as available in your area.

  • Expand your institution's use of social media to include research.

  • Use images and video in your outreach efforts.

Audience

Audience

Audience in a room

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Papers

Papers

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4 globe by lake

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5 Looking for a Book

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1 Government Building

Government Building

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800+
USDA Registered Research
Facilities

115+
Volunteers

120+
Public Animal Research Statements
(and counting)

 

10
Steering Group
Members

7
Subcommittees

1100+
PHS Assured
Institutions in the
United States

 

1100+
AAALAC Accredited Organizations
Worldwide

 

469
Institutions
Hosted BRAD at least once since 2016

3000+
Volunteer Hours

10
Countries with
Formal Openness Agreements

 

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