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UFAW Medal for Outstanding Contributions to Animal Welfare Science

2023 Award Winner

Professor Per Jensen

The 2023 winner of the UFAW Medal is Professor Per Jensen, Professor of Ethology at Linköping University, Sweden.

Professor Jensen was nominated for the award to celebrate his outstanding lifelong service to the field of animal welfare science. Per’s work in domestication, epigenetics and stress has been ground-breaking. His lab’s hatchery is one of the few in the world that keeps a breeding population of red junglefowl, making direct comparison between commercial hens and their wild ancestors possible. This unique and important work allows genetic effects to be experimentally disentangled from experiential ones, providing unique insight into the effect of domestication on behaviour.

Throughout his career, Per has played an influential role in supporting applied ethology and welfare science worldwide through research, education and shaping policy. He has published more than 200 peer reviewed papers, trained and mentored over 60 junior scientists and served the European Commission, European Research Council and other animal welfare bodies. He is also passionate about sharing his research findings with pet owners and farmers, and has authored ten books for a lay audience, covering dog behaviour, chickens, agriculture and animal behaviour and emotions.

Commenting on Professor Jensen’s award, Dr Huw Golledge, UFAW Chief Executive and Scientific Director, said: “Professor Jensen is highly deserving of the UFAW Medal for Outstanding Contributions to Animal Welfare Science. Throughout his career, he has consistently produced some of the highest quality, most innovative research in the field of animal welfare science. Furthermore, he has ensured wide dissemination of his work through the publication of peer reviewed papers and books, and through delivering presentations to both scientific and lay audiences. We are delighted to be able to recognise Per’s service in the science of animal welfare.”