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Research Tools and Methods

 

Power Failure: Why Small Sample Size Undermines the Reliability of Neuroscience

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This study addresses methodological issues in neuroscience research that are a result of low statistical power. The authors discuss how prevalent this issue is in the neurosciences and explain what consequences this has for the robustness of findings coming out of this field. Those advocating on behalf of animals used in research will be interested to read the authors’ discussion of the ethical implications of this phenomenon given neurosciences’ heavy reliance on animal research subjects.

Moral Intensity and Climate-Friendly Food Choices

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There is an increasing awareness about the climate impacts of our food choices. This study looked at the role that a recognition of the moral intensity of climate change plays in an individual’s willingness to adopt a climate-friendly diet. The results showed that the perceived moral intensity of climate change increased the perception of an Earth-friendly diet as a moral imperative as well as increased intentions to make such food choices. The authors outline four ways in which their results can be used to promote a climate-friendly diet.

Advocacy on the Internet: Lessons Learned from the Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act of 2005

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This paper circles back to the time when the Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act was introduced to Congress in 2005 and unpacks the online response by animal advocates. It outlines why—despite opposition coming from more than 250 groups—the animal protection community failed to successfully lobby against this legislation and garner significant mainstream media coverage. As part of this effort, the authors analyzed websites belonging to groups that were part of the “Stop AETA” coalition and offer recommendations for improving communications strategies for advocacy in cyberspace.

2013 eNonprofit Benchmarks Study

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This report provides benchmarks on a number of topics related to online performance—advocacy, email messaging, fundraising, social media, and text messaging programs—that may be of interest to animal protection organizations. The study’s data (from the 2012 calendar year) comes from 55 U.S.-based national nonprofits of varying sizes that represent a number of issue areas including animal protection. Findings are presented by sector and nonprofit size to help organizations find practical benchmarks for their work in these areas.

Bullies, Victims, and Animal Abusers: Do they Exhibit Similar Behavioral Difficulties?

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The goal of this study was to identify patterns of behavioral problems associated with a history of animal abuse, bullying, or victimization. Survey findings showed that animal abusers, bullies, and victims of bullying presented with significantly more behavioral challenges than those without these backgrounds.



U.S. Pet Ownership & Demographics Sourcebook (2012)

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This report compiles data from a large-scale national survey of those who live with companion animals in the U.S. The 2012 results are presented alongside data from previous surveys (dating back to 1987) to highlight trends over time. Topics include demographics of those who live with companion animals, a profile of the companion animal population, and information on veterinary use and spending.



Are meat substitutes liked better over time? A repeated in-home use test with meat substitutes or meat in meals

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This study explored whether repeated consumption of meat substitutes resulted in a greater appreciation for these foods by non-vegetarians. Two plant-based meat alternatives (tofu and Quorn) were tested against chicken as part of an in-home experiment over a 10-week period. Initially chicken was the preferred food, however in time boredom with all three products was apparent and the final results showed no significant differences in product preference. Interestingly, an examination of individual responses showed that an increased preference occurred significantly more frequently for tofu than for other products.

Cat Person, Dog Person, Gay, or Heterosexual: The Effect of Labels on a Man’s Perceived Masculinity, Femininity, and Likability

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This study examined how labels to do with sexuality, companion animal preference, masculinity, and adoption affect individual perceptions of masculinity, femininity, and likability. Survey participants were asked to rate two men appearing in videotape based on these characteristics. The men differed in their degree of masculinity and were given a combination of the above labels or no label. The results showed that while labels did not affect likability, they did have other impacts including that the dog person label often led to heightened attributions of masculinity, and being labeled gay encouraged cross-gender attributions.

Neuroticism and Religious Coping Uniquely Predict Distress Severity among Bereaved Pet Owners

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Personality and religion are known to be factors in the emotional well-being of those grieving the loss of a human. New research suggests these factors are also at play when individuals are faced with the death of a non-human companion. This study found that a propensity for experiencing negative emotions and negative religious coping uniquely predicts what the authors term “pet bereavement distress.”

Redesigning the Donation Box: The Effect of Animal Banks on Donations for Animal Welfare

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Results from this article showed that the exterior of a donation box plays a role in how much money finds its way inside. In this study, five boxes seeking charitable donations for animal protection were placed near a cash register in various bakeries. Four were in the shape of an animal (a cat, cow, dog, or pig) and the fifth was a simple cube. Results showed that the banks shaped as a cat or a dog brought in more contributions than the others. This is an interesting finding for advocates to consider as they look for increasingly creative ways to capture the attention of potential donors.

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