Animal experimentation for scientific research is something of a burning issue in many countries, the Netherlands included. Erasmus MC, University Medical Center Rotterdam, is aware of societal concerns, and it has a social duty to promote the further development of health care. Animal (in vivo) testing is vital to this further development, as are other research methods, including in vitro and in silico experiments, population research and clinical trials. Erasmus MC strives to be open and transparent when it comes to animal testing and the way these tests are carried out at its facilities.
Erasmuc MC operates an Animal Experiments Center, which is involved in research in areas such as oncology, infectious diseases, cardiology and neurology. Erasmus MC recognizes its social responsibility and is open about its work in fulfilling its core tasks of patient care, scientific research and teaching. This includes transparency about animal testing. This is why Erasmus MC opts for a proactive approach. Employees actively participate in debates, educational activities and media initiatives.
The PlayDecide events are primarily aimed at pupils in the latter years of secondary education. This particular target group is vital for the future of scientific research. Young people in this age group are easily influenced, and they are sensitive to animal testing issues. This has been shown in Erasmus MC studies into the effects of public awareness campaigns. These young people will face a number of important choices in just a few years, such as where to go for a (university) education, career considerations, political party affiliation and the right to vote. This is why it is so important to make sure this target group is given clear information. They need to be encouraged to think about new topics and to form their own opinions.
Other target groups include teachers, people living in the vicinity of Erasmuc MC, cultural and social institutions, local policy-makers and politicians. Researchers are also a focus. The aim is to strengthen the positioning of scientific research and to develop a network in which the partners complement and benefit each other.
The events will take place in the Natural History Museum Rotterdam.
Pupils in secondary school in Rotterdam and region will be invited to subscribe using the website: www.brainsatwork.nl
An evening for the general public and super-users will be announced seperately.
Erasmus MC, Natural History Museum Rotterdam, Brains@work, Knowledge Infrastructure Mainport Rotterdam.