International Animal Welfare Symposium
Giraffe calf

Zoos and Aquariums as Welfare Centres: Ethical Dimensions and Global Commitment

May 4 - 6, 2017

The World Association of Zoos and Aquariums (WAZA) and the Detroit Zoological Society’s Center for Zoo Animal Welfare (CZAW) invite leaders in the fields of animal welfare and conservation to join us for the CZAW’s fourth International Animal Welfare Symposium.
Zoos and aquariums play important roles in the conservation of species. They are also centres of animal welfare that focus on individuals, not just species. Within a complex framework that includes and balances sometimes conflicting priorities for individuals (welfare) and for populations (conservation), there is a need for solid science, strong guiding principles and policy, and a clear ethical foundation.
The three-day symposium will include presentations and facilitated discussion focusing on processes to safeguard the well-being of animals and fundamental animal welfare policy for zoos and aquariums developed to ensure all animals are able to thrive. Specific topics will include animal welfare-based accreditation, the use of animals in visitor interactions and welfare aspects of population management.

Among the confirmed participants:

  • Stephanie Allard, Ph.D., Detroit Zoological Society
  • Georgina Allen, Wild Welfare
  • Dan Ashe, Association of Zoos and Aquariums
  • Marc Bekoff, Ph.D., University of Colorado-Boulder (Emeritus)
  • Sarah Bexell, Ph.D., University of Denver
  • Scott Carter, Detroit Zoological Society
  • Bridget Coughlin, Ph.D., Shedd Aquarium
  • Neil D’Cruze, Ph.D., World Animal Protection
  • Nick De Graaf, Zoo and Aquarium Association
  • Stephen Eisenman, Ph.D., Northwestern University
  • Dag Encke, Ph.D., Nuremberg Zoo
  • David Favre, J.D., Michigan State University
  • Professor David Field, Zoological Society of London
  • Karen Fifield, Wellington Zoo
  • Jeffrey Flocken, International Fund for Animal Welfare
  • David Fraser, Ph.D., University of British Columbia
  • Temple Grandin, Ph.D., Colorado State University
  • Jenny Gray, Ph.D., Zoos Victoria
  • Myfanwy Griffith, European Association of Zoos and Aquaria
  • Lori Gruen, Ph.D., Wesleyan University
  • Brij Gupta, Ph.D., Central Zoo Authority, India
  • Paul Hemsworth, Ph.D., University of Melbourne
  • Heribert Hofer, Ph.D., Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research
  • Geoff Hosey, Ph.D., University of Bolton
  • Susan Hunt, Perth Zoo
  • Ron Kagan, Detroit Zoological Society
  • Sonya Kahlenberg, Gorilla Rehabilitation and Conservation Education Center
  • Christopher Kuhar, Ph.D., Cleveland Metroparks Zoo
  • Debborah Luke, Ph.D., Association of Zoos and Aquariums
  • Terry Maple, Ph.D., Florida Atlantic University and Jacksonville Zoo
  • Lori Marino, Ph.D., Kimmela Center for Animal Advocacy
  • David Mellor, Ph.D., Massey University
  • Don Moore, Ph.D., Oregon Zoo
  • Etsuo Narushima, Ph.D., Japanese Zoo and Aquarium Association
  • Leo Oosterweghel, Dublin Zoo
  • Wayne Pacelle, The Humane Society of the United States
  • Theo Pagel, Cologne Zoo
  • Clare Palmer, Ph.D., Texas A & M University
  • Joel Parrott, DVM, Oakland Zoo
  • Nicole Paquette, J.D., The Humane Society of the United States
  • Damian Pellandini, Temaiken Zoo
  • Jessica Pierce, Ph.D., University of Colorado-Denver
  • Mark Pilgrim, Ph.D., Chester Zoo
  • John Racanelli, National Aquarium
  • Daniel Ramp, Ph.D., University of Technology, Sidney
  • Radoslaw Ratajszczak, Warsaw Zoo
  • Adam Roberts, Born Free Foundation
  • Andrew Rowan, Ph.D., Humane Society International
  • Naomi Rose, Ph.D., Animal Welfare Institute
  • Steve Ross, Ph.D., Lincoln Park Zoo
  • Carl Safina, Ph.D., Stony Brook University
  • Tom Schmid, Texas State Aquarium
  • Ken Shapiro, Ph.D., Animals & Society Institute
  • L. Patricia Simmons, North Carolina Zoo
  • Ed Stewart, Performing Animal Welfare Society
  • Kris Vehrs, Association of Zoos and Aquariums
  • Paul Waldau, Ph.D., Canisius College
  • Wen-Haur Cheng, Ph.D., Wildlife Reserves Singapore
  • John Werth, Pan-African Association of Zoo and Aquaria
  • Delci Winders, J.D., Harvard University
  • Robert Young, Ph.D., University of Salford Manchester
  • Cesare Avesani Zaborra, Ph.D., Parco Natura Viva
  • Martin Zordan, DVM, Latin American Zoo & Aquarium Association (ALPZA)

This symposium is targeted at leaders in all regionally and internationally accredited zoos and aquariums, and experts (including academics) in animal care, animal welfare, animal ethics, animal law, wildlife conservation and animal protection. The goal is to create a strong worldwide foundation based on values and principles that further advances the fields of zoo and aquarium animal welfare (and conservation) science and policy.


The symposium will take place in the Ford Education Center at the Detroit Zoo in Royal Oak, Michigan. Evening events and special tours will be offered throughout the Zoo.