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Photo by Kasturi Roy

About the Project Leads

The Animal Centred Research Project is a joint initiative between Professor Clara Mancini (The Open University, United Kingdom) and Professor Eleonora Nannoni (University of Bologna, Italy).

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Clara Mancini

Clara is Full Professor of Animal-Computer Interaction (ACI) at The Open University (OU)'s School of Computing and Communications in United Kingdom.

She is founding head of the OU's Animal-Computer Interaction (AC) Laboratory, whose mission is to study the multiplicity of interactions between animals and technology; design animal-centred technology to improve animals’ wellbeing, support animals' activities and foster interspecies relations; and develop transdisciplinary animal-centred approaches enabling animals to participate in the design process as legitimate stakeholders and contributors.

Clara has led and supervised a range of ACI projects researching and developing interactive systems for different species, particularly dogs; and has published extensively on a range of ACI topics, including technology-mediated human-animal interactions, animal-centred design, participatory design with animals and animal-centred research ethics. She is interested in the design, methodology and ethics of animal-centred interactions for multispecies wellbeing and inclusion, interspecies coexistence and cooperation, and environmental restoration.

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Eleonora Nannoni

Eleonora is Associate Professor of Animal Science a the University of Bologna's Department of Veterinary Medical Science in Italy.

Her main research interest is farm animal welfare, with special emphasis on swine, also in relation to product quality within certified food chains. The research group to which she belongs is committed to providing a sound scientific basis for adopting feasible and ethically oriented farming practices and filling legislation gaps.

Over the years, she has worked on animal welfare assessment, behavioural observations, minimally-invasive welfare indicators, rearing technologies (e.g., space allowance, illumination, environmental enrichment tools, sustainable diets, use of calming phytoextracts), welfare during transport, and consumer perception of animal-friendly products. 

Eleonora graduated in Veterinary Medicine in 2008 and holds a PhD in “Food Science, Animal Nutrition and Food Safety” achieved in 2013. Since 2016 she is a European Veterinary Specialist (Diplomate) at the European College of Animal Welfare and Behavioural Medicine, subspecialty Animal Welfare Science, Ethics and Law (ECAWBM-AWSEL).