Imperial has been recognised for its openness about the use of animals in research with a Leader in Openness Award from Understanding Animal Research.
Imperial College London is one of 13 organisations to be granted Leader in Openness status for the period 2019-2022
The College is a signatory member of the Concordat on Openness on Animal Research, meaning that along with 120 other organisations it has made the following commitments:
- We will be clear about when, how and why we use animals in research
- We will enhance our communications with the media and the public about our research using animals
- We will be proactive in providing opportunities for the public to find out about research using animals
Examples of openness
There have been many initiatives at Imperial to increase awareness of animal research among the College community and the wider public.
Examples include a stand at the Imperial Festival where members of the public could come and learn how animal technicians care for the animals’ welfare, a Google Expedition virtual tour of Imperial’s animal facilities, and live Q and As on the website Reddit with researchers involved in animal research.
These projects are in addition to a dedicated animal research section on the Imperial website where people can learn about Imperial’s work in this area, and weekly news stories about medical discoveries that have been made possible by work involving animals.
For the new Leader awards, Imperial went through several stages of assessment, designed to evaluate those organisations that commit considerable resource and energy to following best practice, embedding openness within their organisations and making the aims of the Concordat a reality. The award was made after a thorough assessment process from a public panel, a peer review process and a second round of public review.
Robert Floyd, Director of Central Biomedical Services, said: “Research involving animals form an essential element of Imperial's work, but the use of animals is not undertaken lightly. The award is a further demonstration of Imperial’s commitment to follow best practice and to be open about the use of animal in research both within the College and with the general public. Congratulations to all the people that have made it possible.”
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