Launch of the Global Journal of Animal Law Åbo Akademi University, Finland

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Under the direction of Professor Birgitta Wahlberg of the Åbo Akademi University in Finland, the new Global Journal of Animal Law (GJAL) has recently released its first issue. Featuring the Director of the Masters Degree in Animal Law and Society and the Director of the Research Group Animals, Law and Society of the UAB, Professor Dr. Teresa Giménez-Candela, as a member of the Board of Editors,* the new Journal has as its aim the promotion of comparative study of Animal Law from a Global Perspective.

With a growing need and interest in the topic around the globe, GJAL intends to offer a broad perspective and provide a new critical research voice to the field of Animal Law. The first issue contains a brief introduction by Professor Allan Rosas, Dr. juris, Dr. h.c., and Judge at the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg which touches on the historical perspective of Animal Law and on the present and future challenges it may face. Following the introduction, Professor Wahlberg, who serves as the Editor-in-Chief, provides a brief Foreword to the issue and discusses some of the challenges of initiating a journal with a global perspective.

Following the Introduction and Foreword, Joan E. Schaffner illustrates how Animals are typically considered in Law according to their status of being owned by humans, rather than having rights that pertain directly to them. The author highlights the need to move past this definition toward the establishment of rights for Animals regardless of their relation to humans. After Schaffner’s article, Vanessa Gerritsen tackles the issue of the state of Animal Law in Switzerland, with regards to their constitutional status. Closing the first issue of the GJAL, is Amelie C. Buhl’s comment on the status of the Animal Welfare Act in Germany and its latest amendments and the movement within Animal Welfare Law in that country.

While the first issue has a concentrated geographic focal point, Professor Wahlberg makes clear in her Foreward that the Journal is intended for scholarship coming from around the world and welcomes collaborations from all countries and continents. Should you wish to contribute to the Journal, the submission deadline for the next issue, slated to be published in January 2014, is October 31, 2013.

The Journal is available for free access at the following link. We hope that you enjoy the reading.

* In addition to Professor Wahlberg and Professor Giménez-Candela, the Board of Editors is composed of the following scholars: Professor Markku Suksi and Professor Elina Pirjatanniemi of Åbo Akademi University, Professor Anne Kumpula of the University of Turku, Professor Matti Niemivuo of the University of Lapland, Professor Matti J. Tolvanen of the University of Eastern Finland, Professor, Director David Bilchitz of Professor at the University of Johannesburg and Director of South African Institute for Advanced Constitutional, Public, Human Rights and International Law (SAIFAC), Professor Peter Sankoff of the University of Alberta, and Professor Joan E. Schaffner B.S., J.D of the George Washington University.

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