First Chair in Animal Welfare & Veterinary Ethics appointed at UCD School of Veterinary Medicine

Dr Siobhan Mullan has been appointed as the first Chair of Animal Welfare & Veterinary Ethics at the UCD School of Veterinary Medicine

The UCD School of Veterinary Medicine has announced the appointment of Dr Siobhan Mullan as the first Chair in Animal Welfare & Veterinary Ethics at the School. Dr Siobhan Mullan joins UCD from the University of Bristol in this new position which is supported by the Department of Agriculture, Food & the Marine. The role will have a focus on farm animals and will further strengthen the work already being carried out in UCD in this area. 

Societal knowledge, perceptions and expectations regarding the welfare of animals and ethical consideration regarding the keeping and use of animals is rapidly evolving.  The UCD School of Veterinary Medicine and the Department of Agriculture, Food & the Marine recognise this, both in the context of veterinary education and research, and in the context of sectoral and societal discourse on animal welfare and ethics in Ireland.

This belief is underpinned by the launch of Ireland’s first overarching Animal Welfare Strategy earlier this week by Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Charlie McConalogue T.D. The establishment of Ireland’s first Chair in Animal Welfare and Veterinary Ethics is a key component of the strategy and marks just one way in which the UCD School of Veterinary Medicine and the Department of Agriculture, Food & the Marine will work collaboratively to achieve the goals set out in the new strategy. 

Speaking about the announcement Professor Michael Doherty, Dean and Head of School of UCD School of Veterinary Medicine said: “We are delighted to welcome Dr Siobhan Mullan to this new role. Siobhan brings a first-class record of research, knowledge and expertise in the areas of animal welfare and ethics to the role and will help further enhance the work already being carried out across the School in these areas.”

He went on to explain that the creation of this post aligns with the goals of the School of Veterinary Medicine's 'One Health, One Welfare' Strategic Plan and as highlighted by the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Charlie McConalogue T.D. earlier this week. ‘’The treatment of animals  is increasingly important to Irish society and we are more aware of the interrelationship between the welfare of animals and human well-being.”

On joining the UCD School of Veterinary Medicine Dr Siobhan Mullan said “This is an exciting journey to be on and I look forward to working alongside colleagues whose work I have respected for many years and with whom I have already worked with collaboratively on animal welfare projects in the past.” She went on to explain that the ultimate goal of the work she carries out is the real-world benefit  it delivers for animals.  “I hope to continue the outstanding quality of research that UCD is known for and conduct studies in animal welfare, sustainable agriculture and veterinary ethics  to inform policy that will have a positive impact on society”.