FAUNALYTICS: ANIMAL EXTREMIST GROUP THAT POSES AS RESEARCHERS
Faunalytics is an animal extremist and veganism group that spews out research projects, some of which are theirs, all in the hopes of destroying animal agriculture and forcing a vegan diet on the world. Even their name describes what they do. “Fauna”, comes from the Roman goddess Fauna, the goddess of earth and fertility. “Analytics” is the systematic computational analysis of data or statistics. It is used for the discovery, interpretation, and communication of meaningful patterns in data. It also entails applying data patterns towards effective decision-making. It can be valuable in areas rich with recorded information; analytics relies on the simultaneous application of statistics, computer programming and operations research to quantify performance.
Faunalytics is a non-profit research organization claiming they are, “dedicated to helping animals by providing useful information to advocates to help them increase their impact.” Faunalytics was formerly called The Humane Research Council. It was founded in 2000 by vegan activist Che Green who served as Executive Director for 20 years before stepping down to pursue other avenues. He now serves on their Board as their Treasurer. Faunalytics’ website states they do original research, conduct surveys and impact evaluations in partnership with “animal protection” groups. The research they offer is free to anyone.
According to their mission statement:
“Faunalytics empowers animal advocates with access to the research, analysis, and strategies that maximize their effectiveness to reduce animal suffering. We provide research and resources to help the animal protection movement increase their impact.”
In the “About” section, they state:
“Faunalytics conducts essential research that helps the animal protection movement work more strategically to increase their impact. We also maintain an online research library of over 4,000 of summaries of external research on animal issues. The range of data and resources we offer, from topics including animals used for food, animals used in science, companion animals, wildlife, and more, help advocates understand how people think about and respond to animal advocacy.”
“Faunalytics is a team of research and communications professionals with strong personal commitments to animal protection. We formed the organization in early 2000 to improve conditions for animals by helping advocates gain access to valid, relevant, and insightful information. Since then, Faunalytics has developed a comprehensive vision for the use of such research to help animals, and our team now is now made up of dedicated directors, expert advisers, employees, and volunteers.”
In other words, they “research” to promote animal extremism and worldwide veganism and push for the end of animal agriculture. They use expertise in marketing and psychology to influence and manipulate public opinion in order to push their radical ideological beliefs.
Ties with Other Animal Extremist Groups
Faunalytics freely mentions who their donors are, which include many groups we have previously written about and you can find on our website under our “What You Need To Know” tab.
Some of these clients and partners include:
● American Anti-Vivisection Society (AAVS)
● American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA)
● Animal Place
● Animals and Society Institute
● Anonymous for Animal Rights
● Born Free USA
● Cats and Dogs International
● Farm Sanctuary
● Food Empowerment Project
● The Fund for Animals
● The Handsel Foundation
● Humane Society of the United States (HSUS)
● The Kirkpatrick Foundation
● Maddie’s Fund
● Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM)
● Vegan Outreach
Faunalytics Promotes Animal Extremism and Veganism
Just looking at their supporters exposes the extremist agenda of Faunalytics. Their website even states that they prioritize impact by striving to provide data that can “help as many animals as possible” by taking on research with high potential impact. They prioritize and select research questions based on a multi-stage process of suggestion, feedback and review. Their reviewers include not just their research team, but researchers and non-research advocates from other “animal advocacy” organizations. In other words, they use like-minded animal extremists to research, analyze and review their studies.
According to their stated methodology, Faunalytics researchers have PhD-level training and years of experience in social science, research methodology, and statistics. Their team of research volunteers have graduate-level training in research-related fields. Why this supposed methodology is so important will be exposed later. They also claim that their original studies are reviewed internally by at least two people (animal extremists and vegans). Their peer review process is flawed because they solicit external peer review from other researchers in the animal advocacy community (i.e. animal extremists) before running any study instead of having it reviewed by non-biased researchers.
Faunalytics and Their So-Called Research
The Faunalytics website shows the very strong animal extremist/vegan bent of their research group. It is important to note that no research by them will be free from bias.
Dr. Casey Taft, Professor of Psychiatry at Boston University School of Medicine, award-winning internationally recognized, and manager of Vegan Publishers, brought up concerns about research provided by the Humane Research Council (now named Faunalytics).
Link to Dr. Taft's article can be read HERE
In his blog post dated December 14, 2014, Dr. Taft directly exposes Humane Research Council’s (Faunalytics) study of current and former vegetarians and vegans for not following accepted scientific method. He states:
“...here are some ‘basics’ of the scientific method that are often neglected in animal advocacy research:
- 1. Generate a set of testable hypotheses that are based on a specific theory or conceptual model. If a study does not have any expectations for what the data analysis will tell us, then hypotheses can’t be tested and the study should be considered exploratory.
- 2. Operationally define and measure the constructs of interest in a clear manner using accepted definitions.
- 3. Draw conclusions supported by the data analysis and avoid going beyond the evidence.
- 4. Subject the research to a peer review process such that other experts in the field can offer their input and ensure that the research is scientifically sound and unbiased.”
This well-known international scientist, who is pro-animal extremism and veganism, has called out the very group who says they are performing research to better impact animal extremist groups.
Who Are the People Behind Faunalytics?
The following biographies are directly from Faunalytics’ website. Note that every one of their board and research team members have all been involved in animal extremist and vegan groups. These people will continue to push for an end to animal agriculture not only in America, but also throughout the world.
Brooke Haggerty, Executive Director
- Brooke Haggerty has over a decade of experience in the nonprofit sector and has dedicated her career to animal protection. She stepped into the leadership role with Faunalytics in January 2020, after serving as our operations manager for over a year. In 2018 she was involved with the "Yes on Proposition 12" coalition promoting a California ballot initiative that established minimum space requirements for farmed animals. Previously she served as the executive director, and later as a board member, for the Foundation for Animal Care and Education, and also worked as a humane educator for the Animal Protection and Rescue League. Brooke has an MA in Human Behavior, a BA in English, and certifications in Marketing and Nonprofit Management.
Jo Anderson, PhD, Research Director
- Jo Anderson is an advocate for animals and empirical research. She has many years of experience with a wide range of social science research methods and topics, as well as advanced training in statistical analysis. Jo became Faunalytics' Research Director in 2017 and since then has led and supervised studies of attitudes and behavior pertaining to animals and veganism, advocate retention, donation decision-making, and many other topics. Her other roles include serving as the co-leader of the RECAP (Research to End Consumption of Animal Products) researcher collective, ad hoc research advisor to ProVeg and **Animal Charity Evaluators' Animal Advocacy Research Fund, and Adjunct Research Professor at Carleton University (Ottawa, Canada). Jo has a PhD in social psychology from the University of Waterloo and completed a two-year postdoctoral fellowship at Cornell University. ** Animal Charity Evaluators also ranks Faunalytics as a standout charity.
Caryn Ginsberg, Board President
- Caryn Ginsberg provides insight and infographics that help animal protection and other progressive organizations move more people to action. Founder of Priority Visions, she has more than two decades of experience helping nonprofits and businesses set strategy to accomplish their goals. Her nonprofit clients have included Animal Legal Defense Fund, Animal Rescue League of Boston, the ASPCA, the Fund for Animals, Human Behaviour Change for Animal Welfare (conference), the Humane Society of the United States and Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine. Caryn taught marketing in the MBA program at Johns Hopkins University and for Humane Society University. She earned her AB in economics and math from Dartmouth College summa cum laude and an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business. For more than a decade, Caryn Ginsberg has helped leaders on issues including: spay/neuter, adoption, emergency animal services, humane education, vegetarianism and veganism, wildlife, and more. As an instructor for Humane Society University and at conferences and events, she has shared strategies about influencing people, businesses and government.
Che Green, Board Treasurer
- Che Green is the founder of Faunalytics (and Humane Research Council), as well as a former analyst, investment banker, and research manager with experience developing and implementing research projects of all kinds. Che has worked and volunteered for a wide range of animal advocacy groups at both the local grassroots and national levels. He is a consultant for animal-friendly businesses and charitable foundations. Che has a BA in business administration with a concentration in finance. He started Faunalytics in 2000 to empower animal advocates through research, and served as its Executive Director for nearly 20 years. In 2020, he co-founded Moonshot Collaborative, a company dedicated to providing market research and consumer insights on plant-based consumers for food innovators and disruptors.
Sharie Lesniak, Board Secretary
- Sharie Lesniak honed her skills in corporate advertising—having enticed consumers to buy everything from Gap clothes to Nissan cars to Absolut Vodka—but came to realize her talents could help animal advocates more effectively sell their message. Sharie spent a decade at Born Free USA as the Creative Director focusing on developing campaigns that convinced consumers to think more humanely and engage in more animal-friendly behaviors. Seeing how integral a healthy earth is for animals (and humans), Sharie jumped back into the corporate world to help aid multifamily communities across the U.S. increase recycling and reduce waste. As the Creative Director at Valet Living, Sharie also helps enable more apartments to provide homes where people can comfortably live with their dogs and cats. Sharie has a BBA from Western Michigan University.
Sarah Hanneken, Board Member
- Sarah Hanneken is an attorney specializing in animal law, with a focus on laws impacting farmed animals. As Legal Advocacy Counsel at Animal Equality, Sarah pursues strategic impact litigation and legislation to protect the interests of farmed animals through the legal system. Sarah uses her creativity and extensive advocacy experience to develop novel legal strategies specifically designed to shift people’s perceptions of animals raised for food. Prior to joining Animal Equality, Sarah worked in the Litigation Program at the Animal Legal Defense Fund, where she honed her skills as a litigator and activist. Sarah graduated magna cum laude from the John Marshall Law School in Chicago, and she received a BA in linguistics from the University of Wisconsin in Milwaukee, where she graduated summa cum laude with a minor in biological sciences.
Steve Schuster, Board Member
- Vegan-ethics advocate Steve Schuster brings deep marketing expertise to Faunalytics, honed by his many decades of experience in technology marketing. He serves as CEO and chief strategist of Rainier Communications, leading the successful marketing of thousands of hardware, software and service products. Steve selectively serves on advisory boards for numerous startups including VeganNation and Billion Vegans, and he regularly serves as a mentor-in-residence for startup incubators and accelerators around the world. Steve holds BSEE and MBA degrees from Northeastern University, is a published singer/songwriter and recording artist, fitness enthusiast, photographer, and he chairs his local YMCA’s board of governors.
Mandy Weeks, Board Member
- Mandy Weeks is an attorney presently working with health care reform and regulation of insurance providers for the state of Washington. She has also served as a legal aid attorney, providing free legal services to low-income individuals and families and as a public defender. Mandy has volunteered for grassroots and national animal advocacy groups as well as providing direct care to animals through a wildlife rehabilitation center and to her companion cat, Ain. Mandy has a BA in political science and a JD.
Karol Orzechowski, Content Director
- Karol Orzechowski is an animal advocate with a passion for blending activism and art. In addition to producing numerous short films on various animal issues, Karol is the director of Maximum Tolerated Dose, a full-length documentary about the psychological toll of vivisection on both animals and humans. He completed a Bachelor of Environmental Studies and an MA in Communications and Culture at York University, writing theses on nationalism and the Atlantic seal hunt, and Canadian rodeo culture, respectively.
Andrea Polanco, Research Scientist
- Andrea Polanco has always been fascinated by animal behavior (including humans). After completing a BA in psychology from Ryerson University, she wanted to learn more about the emotional lives of other animals. As a result, she holds a MSc in animal welfare science from the University of Guelph. She is currently finishing her dissertation from the same lab, where she investigates whether abnormal behaviors are valid markers of subjective states in captive animals. Aside from empirically studying animal welfare, Andrea is also a vocal animal advocate, formerly organizing demos and slaughterhouse vigils in her town. Her activism led her to discover Faunalytics, where she served as a volunteer science writer prior to her Research Scientist position.
Zach Wulderk, Research Scientist
- After years of advocating for animals outside of work, Zach Wulderk decided to make his passion for animals his career. He has a background in economics and political science, graduating from Wesleyan University with a BA in Government, and worked for several years in both economic consulting and economic development before joining the Faunalytics team.
Faunalytics Studies, Projects and Other Resources
Faunalytics not only offers a library of their research, but also research from other animal extremist groups. They provide custom research services, and The Fund for Animals was one of the first groups to use their “study” to push for an end to fur. Additionally they did a survey for cardiologists for the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (another well-known animal extremist group), a poll of magazine recipients for the Animal Protections Institute (which merged with Born Free USA in 2007), as well as research for the groups listed at the beginning of this article.
“We have also launched breakthrough initiatives to help all advocates be more efficient and productive. The Faunalytics Fundamentals series, the Faunalytics Library, the Animal Tracker, and collaborative projects such as the lapsed vegetarian and vegan study bring advocates important new information. Our insight points people to the most promising strategies to help animals.”
Faunalytics, Nothing More than Another Group Bent on Destroying Animal Agriculture
Animal agriculture feeds the world, and Faunalytics is just another group determined to destroy livelihoods, promote food insecurity, and force their vegan agenda on citizens of the world. That is a frightening thought. Animal protein is not something that the human body can live without and stay healthy as we have shown in our Vegan Article series.
Animal agriculture provides food, medications, clothing, and many, many other by-products that are necessary everywhere in the world. There are already too many hungry people in third world countries, as well as food insecurity worldwide. The presumption that the world would be better without animal agriculture is truly frightening. We cannot let this happen and we will fight every day to ensure that it doesn’t.