Second round of master’s grants for research at the intersection of ecology and wild animal welfare science

30 Aug 2019

Are you a student in life sciences deciding on your master’s research topic who wants to make a difference for the wellbeing of animals with your work?

Research on wild animal welfare is growing, though it is still significantly behind similar work carried out about domesticated or captive animals. There is still need for work about animals living outside human control, such as in wild, urban, agricultural or semi-wild areas, that focuses on the factors affecting their wellbeing, rather than on their role in conservation practices. Work in different fields of ecology, in turn, assess many aspects of the lives of these animals, but their welfare is not one of them. Due to the lack of work on this topic, Animal Ethics is calling for applications for small grants to carry out research work at master’s level in the fields of wild animal welfare and wild animal welfare biology.  These are small grants that are meant to help cover part of the expenses incurred in studying for a master’s degree. Depending on the project, they may range from $1,500 to $5,500.

The project must be for the grantee’s master’s thesis. The project must have strong potential for impact in terms of either informing practice or fostering further academic work focused on the promotion of the wellbeing of wild animals considered as individuals (regardless of their conservation status and other considerations).

Eligible areas of work include:

  • Research exploring methods to assess the welfare of animals living in the wild
  • Work to understand the ways animals can be negatively affected by natural causes, or a combination of both indirect anthropogenic and natural factors (the project should not be focused on anthropogenic harms suffered by animals)
  • Research on how to assess the ways to aid animals suffering due to those factors (for instance, vaccination, feeding programs, etc.)
  • Work on urban ecology to assess the wellbeing of animals in urban, suburban, or industrial areas

An example of research funded by Animal Ethics can be seen here. Also see “Research projects in welfare biology” for ideas of research projects we would like to see conducted.

Eligibility criteria

Applications are open to master’s students from most nationalities and countries, as long as the thesis is written in English. There are no restrictions on the location of the institution where the research will be carried out as long as OFAC compliance requirements are met.

Each grant recipient must submit their thesis in 2020. The result of the work must later be published in open access, either via the student’s institution, on the student’s website, on some other platform, or in open access academic journals.

Grant timeline

Application deadline: November 1, 2019

Announcement of selected candidates: November 14, 2019

Payment of the first part of the grant: when the project is accepted by the student’s master’s program

Completion of the project: 2019-2020

Payment of the second part of the grant: when the grantee’s thesis is completed and submitted

How to apply

Please submit the following documents (in English) to academic(a)animal-ethics.org:

  • Your CV
  • Details of the research project to be developed, including the publication(s) you plan to write with the results and their expected impact
  • A short cover letter stating why you are the right person to carry out the research project and why the host institution is an appropriate place for it to be developed

Please submit these as three separate documents rather than combining them into one.

About us

Animal Ethics is a nonprofit organization formed to provide information and promote research about issues affecting animals in general, with a particular focus on animals in the wild. We are based in the USA, and also work in Europe and Latin America.