Animal welfare emergency management : educational needs : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Education (Adult Education), Massey University (Manawatu), New Zealand
Animal Welfare Emergency Management (AWEM) is an emerging area of emergency management. AWEM is used to describe the management of animal welfare needs, through all phases of emergency management. It is a critical component of modern emergency management, due to the complex bond between humans and animals and the unequivocal evacuation non-compliance of pet owners during disasters. As this is a new area, no studies have been conducted to examine the different personnel involved in animal welfare emergency management, nor has the development of evidence-based core competencies been examined.
The purpose of this research was to define animal welfare emergency management, identify and define different groups of personnel involved in animal welfare emergency management and examine core educational domains along with core competencies and the associated assessable learning outcomes.
This study, from a broad perspective, aimed to provide an overview of current multi-discipline competencies, curriculum and course content in relation to disaster practitioners‘ requirements, which could shape the development of similar domains and competencies with associated assessable learning outcomes for animal welfare emergency management personnel. The study also explored the requirements for different levels of cognitive knowledge, from low-order to high-order, within different roles of animal welfare emergency management.
Both quantitative and qualitative data have been collected in this study using a combination of triangulated methods and Delphi technique, including scientific document review and analysis, online questionnaire and a panel of subject experts. The findings from the document review informed the development of core educational domains, and the online questionnaire informed and guided the development of core educational competencies and associated learning outcomes.
This study identified three different groups of personnel involved in animal welfare emergency management; (1) policy/planning, (2) emergency animal shelter and (3) emergency animal
rescue, all of which require defined core competencies to adequately fulfil their roles in animal welfare emergency management.
This study also identified eight core educational domains:
(1) Emergency Management
(2) Animal Welfare Emergency Management
(4) Roles in Animal Welfare Emergency Management
(5) Co-ordinated Incident Management Systems (CIMS)
and eight core competencies with twenty-eight associated assessable learning outcomes.
This study has developed a foundation for the development of educational and training programmes in animal welfare emergency management in New Zealand. These findings indicate the need for replication of this study on an international scale to extend the generalisability of the results and to test the reliability and validity of the newly developed competencies. This could lead to international standardised educational core competencies for all personnel involved in animal welfare emergency management.
This is the first study which has identified the three groups of personnel involved in animal welfare emergency management and developed animal welfare emergency management competencies, with associated assessable learning outcomes. The corpus of knowledge that has evolved from this study could be used to promote awareness of animal welfare emergency management in government, private and educational sectors. Ultimately, adding to the limited literature available in this area will make a significant contribution to addressing the welfare needs of animals during disasters.