Founded in 2016, ASRN consolidates and highlights the significant expertise and research record in Animal Studies that is already present in LHA. Hosting the Animal Studies Journal (http://ro.uow.edu.au/asj/), and with the first minor in Animal Studies in Australia (in the BA), UOW has a strong history of initiating activities that have helped formed the field of Animal Studies over the last decade. Members include two past presidents of the Australasian Animal Studies Association and current series editors of Animal Publics, a series devoted to Animal Studies published by Sydney University Press.

ASRN aims to create a supportive, inclusive and critically inspiring research environment which addresses the value of non-human animal lives. While based within the Faculty of Law, Humanities and the Arts at the University of Wollongong, it strives to enhance links with other Australasian and international institutions with outstanding Animal Studies networks. ASRN will host significant national and international events and speakers, including the international Animaladies II conference in 2018.

What is animal studies?
Animal Studies research recognises the complexity and diversity of animal life and of human-animal relations at both individual and species levels, locally and globally. In the current context of pressing issues of climate change, species extinctions (or eradications), industrial farming, animal welfare and ethics, Animal Studies is more than a timely idea. It is an academic endeavour which resonates with broader societal change, policy shifts and the search for new paradigms for living sustainably.

This emerging academic field serves as a bridge between the social sciences and the sciences, opening up opportunities for cross-disciplinary research. From its membership base in the Faculty of Law, Humanities and the Arts, focused on creative arts, humanities and social sciences, ASRN will seek opportunities for collaboration with researchers across campus with shared or intersecting interests, such as cultural geography and environmental science.