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The idea for this book began from the learning experiences of students enrolled in a subject, “Animal Law and Policy” (Animal Law), at the University of Technology Sydney (UTS). The topic of animal law is comparatively new in Australia and this is reflected in the fact that no animal law case book is in publication for the Australian jurisdiction. In 2013, Sophie Riley and Geoffry Holland, the teachers of Animal Law, received a Vice-Chancellors Learning and Teaching Grant to compile a series of animal law case notes written by UTS students. In 2014, Sophie Riley was successful in winning a Voiceless Grant to enable the case notes to be edited and compiled into a book.

The initial Vice-Chancellors Learning and Teaching Grant project was informed by the UTS Model of Learning and Teaching, which consists of three core elements: practice-oriented education; education that is situated in a “global workplace”; and, learning that is motivated by research and/or inquiry. This model is also consistent with the law faculty graduate attributes including those that target practice-oriented learning and public service

The students were each asked to prepare three case notes. The case notes were to be written in a standardised format setting out the facts of the case, the issues, the decision, and also a brief reflection on the significance of the case. In order to target the development of communication skills, the students were also asked to write the case notes so that they would be understood by, and be useful to, lawyers and non-lawyers alike. The aim was to prepare a resource that would be freely available to all who have an interest in animal law.

From a pedagogical perspective, the preparation of the case book was a practical learning exercise designed not only to sharpen the students’ communication skills, but also, to encourage the students to think critically about animal law in a broader context. The latter was managed by the inclusion of a short reflection on the significance of each case. In addition, by taking part in this project, the students are making a practical contribution to the discipline of animal law, as well as engaging in the transfer of legal knowledge to the wider community. It is intended that the case book will be updated regularly.

As already noted, the project received support from a Vice-Chancellors Learning and Teaching Grant and a Voiceless Grant. However, this book would not have been possible without the help of many others, including:

  • Geoffry Holland, one of the teachers in the Animal Law subject. Due to his other commitments he was not able to participate in the editing process for this edition, but will be available for subsequent editions.
  • The NSW Young Lawyers Animal Law Committee for help with editing and providing suggestions for improvements on the structure of the book. In particular, Rebekah Lam, a member of the Committee, was instrumental in garnering support for the project.
  • Emmanuel Giuffre, the legal counsel of Voiceless, the animal protection institute, for help with editing and making suggestions for improvements on the structure of the book.
  • Frank Riley for help with editing, proof reading and providing a lay person’s perspective on the intelligibility of the case notes.
  • Ashleigh Best, a student at UTS for her assistance in single-handedly undertaking the enormous job of the final editing of this case book. Her attention to detail and dedication to the task was unprecedented.

The use of word “animal” in this book refers to nonhuman animals.

Finally, although the case notes have gone through a rigorous editing process, it is still likely that the book contains errors and omissions. It would be appreciated if readers could notify Sophie Riley of these, together with suggestions for improvement:

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