About this Research Topic
The field of Animal-Computer Interaction (ACI) investigates how interactive technologies affect the individual animals involved; what technologies could be developed, and how they should be designed in order to improve animals’ welfare, support their activities and foster positive interspecies relationships; and how research methods could enable animal stakeholders to participate in the development of relevant technologies.
A fundamental tenet of ACI is that the technologies being designed, the methods employed for their development and the ethical underpinnings of those methods should be animal-centered, meaning that the characteristics, needs and wants of the animals involved should be of primary consideration and should directly inform design processes and outcomes. This perspective has key advantages, for example, ensuring that animals’ interactions with technologies are positive and effective, and addressing growing societal concerns over the treatment of animals.
We are particularly interested in contributions from different perspectives, which highlight possible animal-centered approaches in research and design, as well as challenges that animal-centered approaches might pose and how these might be addressed. This Research Topic aims to bring together novel contributions that demonstrate how animal-centered technologies, research methods and ethical frameworks could benefit research and practice in different domains, including for example farming, animal conservation and welfare, or animal research. Our goal is to produce a resource for researchers and practitioners whose work involves animals and for whom the applicability of animal-centered technologies, methods or frameworks may be relevant.
We welcome submissions (original research, reviews, methods, perspectives or brief research reports) that contribute, but are not necessarily limited, to the following themes:
• Applications of animal-centered and/or interactive technologies within farming, animal research, conservation, welfare or other domains
• Animal-centered research, design methods and frameworks that have been applied or have applicability within farming, animal research, conservation, welfare or other domains
Submissions should discuss the benefits that the proposed animal-centered technologies and/or approaches have had or are expected to have for the welfare of animals, for the activities in which animals are involved in different domains, and/or for human-animal relations. Submissions should also discuss any challenges and limitations to the applicability of animal-centered technologies and/or approaches, and how these might be addressed.
Conflicts of Interest:
In 2016, Mancini received a grant from Pet Plan Charitable Trust for a project aiming to develop dog-friendly ambient controls for mobility assistance dogs. However, the Trust has never interfered in the development of the work and the work is now almost complete.
In 2020, Nannoni received a grant from a private, egg-producing company, for a research trial on the assessment of the welfare of laying hens housed in different aviary systems. The trial will be completed within the next few months and the topic of the research is not related to the topic of the Research Topic therefore no conflict of interest arise.
Keywords: Animal-computer interaction, laboratory animals, animal welfare, captive animals, companion animals, conservation
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.