International Summer School in Human-Animal Studies

International Summer School in Human-Animal Studies

Classroom 3
09:30 - 18:00


This Summer School aims at training PhD students, early-stage researchers, as well as scholars interested in the topic, in the study of human-animal relations and its many-fold dimensions. The course will cover both the theoretical and methodological challenges of studying non-human animals in the interface with human life. It will cover key concepts and methods from different disciplines and epistemologies within the social sciences and humanities. It will fill a gap in the offer of European academia and summer schools. The course will provide 5 ECTS and have as a main goal the training of a new generation of researchers in the field. The course will provide them with expertise to work with policy makers, veterinarians, NGOs and other stakeholders involved in activities with animals and the welfare of animals. The course will not only be relevant to those specifically interested in the field of human-animal studies, but also to all scholars who encounter human-animal relations in their field: pests and stray animals in urban studies; farm animals in rural studies, zoonotic diseases in risk studies, laboratory animals in bioethics, and so on. The school also aims at meeting the students’ needs in the course of preparing their PhD or research projects.


This School is a joint organization of three European universities: the ICS-ULisboa; the HumAnimal Group at Centre for Gender Studies, Uppsala University; and the School of History, Culture and Arts Studies at the University of Turku.

The venue of the Summer School will be rotative, each year in one of the the three organizing institutions, but flexible to accommodate possible changes in rotation.   

In the first year, the School will be held in Lisbon, at the ICS-ULisboa facilities, between the 3rd and 7th June 2019.

The subsequent years, the School can be given at University of Turku and Uppsala University. The committee members are also in touch with human-animal studies networks in Germany, Norway and the United Kingdom, which opens up the possibility of a large animal studies summer school network.

Margo DeMello

received her Ph.D. in Cultural Anthropology from U.C. Davis in 1995. She is an Adjunct Professor at Canisius College in the Anthrozoology Masters Program, and the Program Director for Human-Animal Studies at the Animals and Society Institute.

Her books include Bodies of Inscription: A Cultural History of the Modern Tattoo Community (2000), Stories Rabbits Tell: A Natural and Cultural History of a Misunderstood Creature (2003), Low-Carb Vegetarian (2004), Why Animals Matter: The Case for Animal Protection (2007), The Encyclopedia of Body Adornment (2007), Feet and Footwear (2009), Teaching the Animal: Human Animal Studies Across the Disciplines (2010), Faces Around the World (2012), Animals and Society: An Introduction to Human-Animal Studies (2012), Speaking for Animals: Animal Autobiographical Writing (2012), Inked: Tattoos and Body Art around the World (2014), Body Studies: An Introduction (2014), and Mourning Animals: Rituals and Practices Surrounding Animal Death (2016).



Nora Schuurman

is an Academy Research Fellow at the University of Turku, Finland. She is a human geographer specialised in animal geography, and currently studies human–animal care in her project “Landscapes of Interspecies Care: Working the Human–Animal Boundary in Care Practices”. Her areas of expertise include human–animal relationality, eco-nationalism and cultural conceptions of animal welfare and death, with a specific focus on human relations with horses and pets. Schuurman has published numerous peer-reviewed articles and co-edited the book Affect, Space and Animals (Routledge, 2016) with Jopi Nyman. She has been teaching HAS for several years.




David Redmalm

is an associate professor at Mälardalen University, Sweden. His research focuses on the construction of humanity and animality in everyday relationships between humans and other animals, and the implications of these relationships both for social theory and for nonhuman animals themselves. He has studied interspecies relationality in a variety of contexts—riding schools, pet cemeteries, and the White House, to name a few. Redmalm’s work has been published in journals such as The Sociological Review and Organization, and in a number of anthologies, most recently in Equine Cultures in Transition (eds Bornemark, Andersson & Ekström von Essen) and Death Matters (eds Holmberg, Jonsson & Palm).


Verónica Policarpo

is a sociologist and researcher at ICS-ULisboa, in the field of Human-Animal Studies. Since October 2018 she coordinates project “CLAN -  Children-Animals’ Friendships: challenging boundaries between humans and non-humans in contemporary societies" (PTDC/SOC 28415/2017). She is a member of the LIFE and ATS (Environment and Society) Research Groups and the coordinator of "Animal Wonder - Reading Group on Human-Animal Studies @ICS-ULisboa". She has published about companion animals, and about animals and the sustainable development agenda.




Invited Lecturer: Lisa Strömbeck

is a Swedish artist, living and working in Borrby, Sweden and Copenhagen, Denmark. She works with photography, video and collage, and has exhibited in numerous solo and group exhibitions throughout the world.  A recurring theme in her art works, is human's relationship with other animals. With simple means, she stunts power games and examines the hierarchies that exist. She has examined her relationship with her own dog in works such as "I Love You. You're Mine." (2000) and in the video trilogy "In Memory of All Those Who Work Without Ever Getting a Reward" (2007). She has interacted with stray dogs in different parts of the world in works like "Vacation in Goa" (1997), "New Friends" (2007) and Hierarchy (2008). The photo series "Uniform" (2008-9) is another example of a political work where people and their companion animals, act in relation to the animals that died for the furs people wear. The photo series In Bed, which she started 2015 and still works on, describes the body contact between people and their dogs.

Module 1:  Theory & Concepts: Human Animal Studies: re-mapping the field

Keynote Lecturer: Margo de Mello


Module 2: Theory & Concepts: Animal practices, human-animal relationality and animal agency

Lecturers: Verónica Policarpo, Nora Schuurman and David Redmalm


Module 3: Methodologies: Experimenting with methods in HAS

Lecturers: Nora Schuurman, Verónica Policarpo and David Redmalm


Module 4: Methodologies: “I love you. You’re mine” - On artistic engagements with dogs

Lecturer: Lisa Strömbeck


HAS@ICS-ULisboa Seminar 2019:  Children-Animals Relationships

Invited Keynote: Margo de Mello

Title: Rabbits and Children: A Complicated History


Module 5: Theory and concepts: Death, loss and grief for a companion animal

Lecturers: David Redmalm and Nora Schuurman


To apply

The deadline for applications is 15 March. Send your application via email with a doc, docx or pdf file to The file should include your name, contact details, level of education, the name of the university where you are currently affiliated, and a description of 500 words of a planned or ongoing thesis project. A notification of acceptance will be sent by 29 March. After acceptance, participants will be asked to submit an additional 1500 words about their project.


Course fee: 250 euros to be paid by all participants.

ICS: 50% off Tuition

The fee paid upon registration is non-refundable

The school will only be held if the necessary quorum is reached.

Coordenador Externo 
Nora Schuurman
University of Turku, Finland
David Redmalm
University of Uppsala, Sweden