Published: 21 May 2019 | Last Updated: 10 Aug 2023 10:31:25

The Royal Veterinary College is one of the first organisations to gain a Leadership in Openness award.

Leaders in Openness in Animal Research are organisations who commit considerable resource and energy to following best practice, embedding openness within their organisations and making the aims of the Concordat on Openness on Animal Research a reality.

The Royal Veterinary College has been recognised as a leading organisation alongside 12 other organisations, following a three-stage assessment: a public panel, peer review and public review.

Professor Jonathan Elliott, Vice-Principal, Research and Innovation, said: “The Royal Veterinary College are delighted to receive this award recognising our commitment to openness in the ways animals are used in research. RVC shares society's desire to minimise the use of animal experimentation and increase the use of scientifically validated alternatives. Nevertheless, animal experimentation remains a necessary part of the scientific discovery process and development of new medicines for veterinary practice. Transparency around animal experimentation is vital to ensure public trust in and we are committed to improving the health and welfare of animals worldwide. As the world’s number one veterinary school we are proud to be leaders in openness on animal research.”

In October 2012, over 40 organisations from the life science community in the UK, including the Royal Veterinary College, signed a Declaration on Openness on Animal Research. They committed to developing a Concordat setting out how they would be more open about the ways in which animals are used in scientific, medical and veterinary research in the UK. In May 2014 the Concordat on Openness on Animal Research in the UK in the UK was launched with 72 signatories from all sectors of the life sciences community.  There are now 121 organisations signed up to the Concordat. The Concordat commits its signatories to enhance their communication about their use of animals.

Specifically signatories make the following commitments:

  1. We will be clear about when, how and why we use animals in research
  2. We will enhance our communications with the media and the public about our research using animals
  3. We will be proactive in providing opportunities for the public to find out about research using animals
  4. We will report on progress annually and share our experiences


Notes to Editors

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About the RVC

  • The Royal Veterinary College (RVC) is the UK's largest and longest established independent veterinary school and is a constituent College of the University of London.
  • The RVC is ranked as the world’s number one veterinary school in the QS World University Rankings 2019.
  • The RVC offers undergraduate, postgraduate and CPD programmes in veterinary medicine, veterinary nursing and biological sciences.
  • The RVC was the first veterinary school in the world to hold full accreditation from AVMA, EAEVE, RCVS and AVBC, and currently holds full accreditation from RCVS, AVBC and AVMA and conditional from EAEVE.
  • In 2017, the RVC received a Gold award from the Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) – the highest rating a university can receive.
  • A research-led institution, the RVC maintained its position as the top veterinary institution in the Research Excellence Framework (2014), with 79% of its submission being rated as world-class or internationally excellent.
  • The RVCThe RVC also provides animal owners and the veterinary profession with access to expert veterinary care and advice through its teaching hospitals: the Beaumont Sainsbury Animal Hospital, in central London, and the Queen Mother Hospital for Animals (Europe's largest small animal referral centre) and Equine Referral Hospital, both located at the Hertfordshire campus.

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