The Science of Animal Thinking and Emotion: Sentience as a Factor in Policy and Practice

The Science of Animal Thinking and Emotion:
A Conference on Sentience as a Factor in Policy and Practice

Kellogg Conference Center at Gallaudet University, Washington, D.C., March 17-18, 2014

HUmane societyScience is making stunning discoveries about animal cognition, awareness and emotion.

How can we apply and leverage this information for positive change in government, industry and other sectors?

This two-day conference brings together leaders in the science and implications of animal sentience, and influential voices in the policy and corporate domains.

As the bedrock of animal ethics, sentience deserves a more prominent place in the legislative, corporate, and institutional landscapes where decisions about animals and their care and status are made.

Conference Program

Monday, March 17, 2014 — The Science and Implications of Animal Cognition Morning Session

8:30-8:45 Welcome (Andrew Rowan)
8:45-9:15 The Emotional Brain (Jaak Panksepp, PhD, Washington State University)
9:45-10:15 Ape and Dog Cognition (Brian Hare, PhD, Duke University)
10:45-11:15 Farm Animal Cognition, (Ian J.H. Duncan, PhD, Global Animal Partnership)
11:45-12:15 Awareness and Experience (Robert Mitchell, PhD, Eastern Kentucky University)
1:30-2:00 The Fishes (Victoria Braithwaite, PhD, Penn State University)
2:30-3:00 Animal Language (Con Slobodchikoff, PhD, Professor Emeritus, No. Arizona Univ.)
3:30-4:00 Animal Pleasure (Jonathan Balcombe, PhD, Humane Society University)
4:30-5:00 Dog Emotions with fMRI (Greg Berns, MD, PhD, Emory University)
6:00-8:00 Conference Dinner

Tuesday, March 18, 2014 — The Application of Animal Cognition

9:00-9:30 Sentience of Reptiles (Vladimir Dinets, PhD, MSc, University of Tennessee)
10:00-10:30 Sentience, Psychology and Social Change (Hal Herzog, PhD, Western Carolina University)
11:00-11:30 Sentience and Bio-Politics (Bernard Unti, PhD, The Humane Society of the US)
12:00-12:30 Sentience, Development and Cultural Change: Human-Animal Relations in Contemporary China (Peter Li, PhD, Humane Society International)
1:45-2:15 Marketing Sentience through the Media (Clare Molloy, PhD, Edge Hill Univ., UK)
2:45-3:00 The Influence of Sentience on Animal Research (Marita Candela, Professor In Law at Universitat Autónoma de Barcelona)
3:30-4:00 Sentience and Animal Welfare in the EU (Marguerite Kuzma, Policy Officer, Animal Welfare Unit, the European Commission)
4:15-4:45 Sentience of Cetaceans and the Global Conservation Agenda (Mark Simmonds, OBE, Sr. Marine Scientist, Humane Society International)
5:00-5:15 Closing Remarks, End of Conference

For more information/registration, visit:

Program Summary (PDF)

Note : Registration for this conference is expensive (even for students, registration fees are 90$), but includes breakfast and lunch on both days of the conference.