Faunalytics’ 2021 Year In Review
As Faunalytics looks back on over two decades of providing research to the animal protection movement, we can’t help but pause and feel grateful. Thanks to the support of our community, we’ve published thousands of data-driven resources for hundreds of thousands of advocates over the years. With the goal of empowering and informing our movement, your Faunalysts are committed to helping advocates around the globe apply research, data, and impact evaluation to their campaigns for animals.
As a capacity-building organization, our work is behind the scenes, helping other advocates thrive. We do this work because we’re passionate about animal protection and we’re passionate about research. As an organization that stays out of the spotlight, we were thrilled and humbled to find out that this year, Faunalytics has been named a Top Charity by Animal Charity Evaluators!
Our entire team is honored by this recognition and we will work hard to live up to this designation. But this recognition belongs to all of you, our supporters and followers, who also believe in the importance of evidence-based advocacy. Our work matters because it matters to you. So while there is still so much to be done for the animals, we’d like to take a moment to celebrate our accomplishments.
Below I have the privilege of sharing the highlights from one of Faunalytics’ most exciting and productive years to date. You’ll also get a sneak peek of what we have planned for 2022! In the meantime, thank you for engaging with and supporting our work, and for all you do for the animals and the world we share. We can’t wait to see what we accomplish together in the coming year.
Highlights From 2021
Through our Original Research, we conduct studies that delve into important issues in animal protection. We prioritize research topics that have the potential to impact many animals and/or can be used by many advocates; therefore, the majority of our original research focuses on farmed animal issues and “meta” topics. Faunalytics’ Original Research program is spearheaded by our Research Director, Dr. Jo Anderson.
Faunalytics’ comprehensive Research Library houses over 4,600 study summaries to help animal advocates work as effectively as possible. Our collection of resources supports advocates working in all areas of animal welfare, including farmed animals, companion animals, animals used in science, animals used in entertainment, wildlife, effective animal advocacy, and more. Faunalytics’ Research Library and visual content is curated and created by our Content Director, Karol Orzechowski.
Exclusive Analysis – U.S. Wildlife Imports: Faunalytics’ team will often conduct in-depth analysis of external datasets, such as our Global Slaughter Statistics. This year, we assessed the legal wildlife trade in our new U.S. Wildlife Imports analysis. The data reveal some truly concerning numbers: between 2000-2014, over 3 billion live organisms were imported to the U.S., 78% of which were taken from the wild.
Visual & Video Collections: 7 new additions to our Faunalytics Explains video series on topics including plant based labels, farmed animal imagery, aquaculture, conservation, and more; 1 new addition to our in-depth Faunalytics Fundamentals infographics series, this time focusing on marine mammals, fishes, cephalopods, invertebrates, and other species that live in the vast oceans.; 2 new factsheets on the (winnable) issue of greyhound racing and on cultured meat.
Faunalytics also provides direct support work, where we help advocates apply research to their own campaigns and strategies. Delivered either one-on-one or via small group settings, our team provides guidance on finding data, conducting surveys, and more, helping advocates be as effective as possible.
- 65+ advocates and organizations have been helped directly through our Office Hours program.
- New Office Hour sessions were added to provide support to advocates in additional time zones, and advocates can now reach out to Faunalytics for support in English, French, Spanish, and Polish.
- 3 partner projects providing light research support to groups including Animal Friends Jogja, the Brooks Institute for Animal Rights Law and Policy, and Encompass Movement.
- 645+ advocates reached via 18 presentations to groups including Animal Futures, Aquatic Life Institute, Asia for Animals, Effective Altruism NYC, Farmed Animal Conference E-Summit, Humane Society International India, Outlier, Oxford Veg, and more.
- We published a brand new webinar: Designing Effective Surveys, where advocates can learn everything they need to know about designing an effective survey to inform their work or measure their impact.
- We revitalized and relaunched our entire Research Advice Resource Center, where advocates can find helpful information about every stage of the research process, from literature reviews to analyzing data to research ethics.
- Faunalytics’ research director co-facilitated 10+ RECAP West meetings (Research to End the Consumption of Animal Products is a collective of over 180 researchers in the movement), and helped launch RECAP East, a sister organization for researchers in Southeast Asia.
The Impact We Made
Each year, Faunalytics conducts an annual Community Survey of our audience, the animal advocates and researchers who engage with our website, newsletter, and social media. The more we can understand how advocates use and engage with our work, the stronger our impact will be. Our 2021 Community Survey received over 400 complete responses, highlights include:
- 96% of respondents agreed that our work is high-quality;
- 92% had put our resources to concrete use, in a wide variety of ways; for example, to improve advocacy materials (e.g., by adding facts) or to improve advocacy techniques (e.g., outreach method);
- 79% agreed that Faunalytics’ work has helped guide their advocacy decisions; and
- 84% thought our work is either extremely or very valuable to improving animal advocacy.
Faunalytics’ free, virtual Office Hours program supports advocates seeking data-driven insight and guidance to inform their work. We’re excited to share results from our Office Hours Attendee Survey, demonstrating the impact of this program over the last year. Highlights include:
- 90% of Office Hour attendees were completely satisfied with our support, 10% were satisfied.
- 87% said they will definitely use what they learned from us in their work, 13% said they probably would.
- 92% said they probably or definitely think the help Faunalytics’ team provided will help them reduce animal suffering or save animal lives.
In addition to surveys like those above, we also use web analytics to monitor engagement with our work. This year, Faunalytics.org has received over 360,000 visitors and over 500,000 pageviews so far!
Evaluating our impact is something Faunalytics is actively seeking to improve. We’re constantly exploring new ways to understand how our research and other resources are being used to help end animal suffering. While this is a constant work in progress, you can discover how we currently evaluate our effectiveness here, or visit our new Impact Center to learn more.
Behind The Scenes With Faunalytics
In addition to our public-facing programs outlined above, Faunalytics had a lot of exciting changes happening behind the curtains this year. As the need for research grows and more advocates turn to data to inform their work, we’ve needed to grow as well! This year, we expanded our small but mighty team, adding new research scientists (welcome Andrea Polanco and Zach Wulderk!) and capacity builders (welcome Jenna Riedi and Liz Wheeler!) to the team, bringing our staff size up to seven. Read on to learn about what else we’ve had going on lately.
- 34 dedicated volunteers provided approximately 1,070 hours of support as research analysts, library writers and editors, graphic designers, and more. We’re extremely grateful for their time and talents that make our important work possible.
- Faunalytics outlined our commitment to equity and inclusion, and our team discussed 20+ readings to help with our equity goals. I also had the opportunity to contribute to Our Hen House’s audio series of the book Antiracism in Animal Advocacy, Igniting Cultural Transformation.
- 60+ hours of staff time dedicated to professional development courses and conferences, including J-PAL and MIT’s intensive Evaluating Social Programs course.
Research On Deck
This year Faunalytics worked hard to improve our rigorous, multi-stage research prioritization process to help us choose research topic areas and questions that will have the greatest impact. Thanks to the valuable feedback from advocates in our community, we’re thrilled to announce our 2022 research lineup below. For more details and to learn about everything else we have planned, don’t miss our 2022 Plans & Priorities blog.
- Going Vegan or Vegetarian (Part III)
- Beliefs About Chickens and Fish & Their Relation to Animal-Positive Behaviors in Brazil, Canada, China, and India
- Perspectives on Animal Advocacy in China (Part II, Public Perspectives)
- Relative Effectiveness of Different Approaches to Advocacy
- Examples of Successful Anti-Subsidy Lobbies
- State-by-State Reactions to Potential Legislative Changes
- Local Laws as a Strategic Stepping Stone for Legislative Efforts
- Reduction Targets by Demographic
- Chicken and Fish Substitution Meta-Analysis
- Does Humane Labeling Backfire?
- Estimating Social Spread of Advocacy
Ways to Support Our Animal Advocacy Research
You can help launch Faunalytics into the coming year by contributing to the vital work that animal advocates depend on. Here are a few easy easy to get involved:
- Donate: The easiest way to support our work is to donate! You can donate on Faunalytics’ website, through PayPal, or via our Facebook fundraiser. Checks can be mailed to PO Box 152703, San Diego, CA 92195.
- Shop: With a variety of fun swag options including shirts, mugs, backpacks, and more, Faunalytics’ store offers one-stop shopping this holiday season. You can also support us when you shop on Amazon!
- Amplify: Help spread the word about Faunalytics by creating a social media fundraiser in support of our work. Our Fundraising Hub makes the process a breeze, and you’ll help introduce new advocates to a treasure trove of information they can use to help save animals’ lives.
Thank You For Your Support
Faunalytics would like to extend our sincere gratitude to all of our fellow advocates, incredible volunteers, dedicated donors, and the following organizations for helping us make our work possible this year: A Well-Fed World, Animal Charity Evaluators, Centre for Effective Altruism, Culture and Animals Foundation, Food Systems Research Fund, Gerald B. Shreiber Foundation, Gregory J. Reiter Memorial Fund, Joanna Toole Foundation, Open Philanthropy Project, Park Foundation, ProVeg, Seattle Foundation, Stray Dog Institute, The Tipping Point Private Foundation, VegFund, the William and Charlotte Parks Foundation, and several anonymous supporters.
On behalf of the entire Faunalytics Board and Staff, thank you for your support of our work, and for all you do to advance animal protection. We are honored to work beside you, and look forward to bringing you important new research and resources in the coming year.