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Advocacy Strategies

 

Faces of Advocacy: Who We Really Are

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There are many studies on the demographics of animal advocacy, as well as more in-depth explorations, that give us an intriguing portrait of the "activist" face of animal advocacy. But what about the people who don't fit the conventional definition of "activist," or the majority demographic profile, who may not even see themselves as animal advocates? Are there other faces of animal advocacy that are overlooked, and if so, what is the cost to these unacknowledged advocates - and to animal advocacy itself - of not counting them in?

Adopter-Dog Interactions at the Shelter: Behavioral and Contextual Predictors of Adoption

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This study surveyed factors in a potential guardian's adoption decision after interacting with a dog in a visitor space at an animal shelter. Having the intention to adopt was the best predictor of adoption - however, 41% of respondents with that intention did not adopt. Lack of interaction by the dog, either by disinterest in play, or not lying down close to the visitor, was the best predictor of non-adoption. The visiting location also seemed to have an influence on the adoption decision. Training dogs in desired behaviors may improve adoption rates, but more research is needed to confirm and refine the results.


Too Much Choice is a Bad Thing

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Continuing our discussion of why campaign targeting is important, HRC co-founder and Executive Director Che Green explores how decision fatigue can impact responses. He also considers whether simplification of choice should be applied to animal advocacy as a whole.




Reading a Book Can Change Your Mind, But Only Some Changes Last for a Year

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The goal of this study was to measure the impact of reading an engaging book with a message upon the attitudes of college students soon after their exposure to the material, compared to a year later. Students who had read the book were significantly more aligned with the author's views on several food-related issues than students who had not, although the degree of agreement declined after a year on most issues. The possible impact of multiple, widely publicized food safety scares before and during the study period was not addressed.


Humane League Labs: Seeking What Works Best

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There are things we know about advocacy and there are things we think we know about advocacy. This week we feature a guest blog from Humane League Labs on their recently completed "Diet Change and Demographic Characteristics of Vegans, Vegetarians, Semi-Vegetarians, and Omnivores." In this post, they discuss the sometimes surprising results on the most effective materials and strategies for veg*n advocacy.


Protecting Animals versus the Pursuit of Knowledge: The Evolution of the British Animal Research Policy Process

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This case study argues that an exclusive pro-animal-experimentation policy community has persisted in the UK despite regulatory changes. Providing sample correspondence regarding a pharmaceutical company interspecies transplantation project, the author asserts that this network encompasses government agencies in charge of oversight, and renders them largely ineffective at reducing experimentation or improving animal welfare, out of view of animal advocates and the general public.



After Animal Exploitation – Imagining A Post-Advocacy World

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Animal exploitation is embedded in present-day human lifestyles in too many ways to easily imagine a world without it, but advocates need a vision. How would human behaviors that threaten animals today be different in a future where animals matter, and how do we get there from here?




Cats vs. Birds: Researching the Research

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In this reblogged post from his Vox Felina blog, feral cat advocate Peter J. Wolf demonstrates how to evaluate the validity of research with his in-depth critique of a study on bird predation. Policy decisions to promote the well-being of all animals should be based on sound research, not regurgitated assumptions. Animal advocates should be on the lookout for poorly documented assertions about animals in the press.


When You Emphasize Everything, You Emphasize Nothing

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Is the target audience for your campaign "everyone"? More is better, right?

In the first of two installments, HRC co-founder and non-profit marketing specialist Anthony Bellotti discusses why that isn't an effective approach.



A Critique of Single-Issue Campaigning and the Importance of Comprehensive Abolitionist Vegan Advocacy

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This essay argues that vegan outreach is the only appropriate tactic to terminate the property status of non-human animals and abolish speciesism. Using consumer marketing as an analogy, the authors assert that animal protection campaigns which focus on a single issue or species, or in any other way fail to promote universal veganism as the end goal, weaken progress towards that goal by creating competing "products" for "consumers." They attribute the prevalence of such approaches to the professionalization, and therefore moderation, of the animal protection movement.


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