The first World Congress on Alternatives and the Use of Animals in Life Sciences was held in Baltimore, MD, USA in 1993 and was announced to be the first in a series of world congresses, to be hosted by various countries at two or three year intervals. Over the years subsequent World Congresses (WC’s) have been organised in Utrecht (The Netherlands), Bologna (Italy), New Orleans (USA), Berlin (Germany), Tokyo (Japan), Rome (Italy), Montreal (Canada), Prague (Czech Republic) and Seattle (USA). The 11th WC was a virtual Congress held in Maastricht  in 2021, and the next Congress will be held in Niagara Falls (Canada) in 2023.

The Alternatives Congress Trust (ACT) is now calling for offers for the organisation of the 13th World Congress (WC13) in 2025 or 2026.

Applications should be submitted by Saturday, July 1, 2023. Applicants should consider the following:

Eligibility conditions and essential considerations include:

  • The congress must be organised and held under the auspices and with the approval of the ACT. Following the selection by the ACT Board of the preferred bidding party, the ACT Board will appoint one of its members as contact person and advisor.
  • The congress should have formal intellectual support of a public entity in the country hosting the congress (such as a governmental body or city council) and/or an institution with a professional interest in animal welfare, animal ethics, 3Rs (such as a university, national health institute, an NGO of standing) under which patronage the congress will be held.
  • The congress should aim at being financially self-supporting and, preferably, have a safety net construction providing financial backing (usually by the congress patron entity) in case of an unexpected and unforeseen setback. If needed the ACT could participate in the safety net construction.
  • If needed, the ACT will provide a reasonable sum of money to facilitate the starting phase of the congress development. 
  • Any positive financial balance of the congress, including the start-up financial support, must be returned to the ACT bank account.   
  • The congress should have a Chair and a Co-Chair with professional affiliation in the public sector, including NGOs, and (at least one of them) with a track record that clearly includes experimental animal welfare, animal ethics and/or 3R experience.
  • The Chair and/or Co-Chair should have ample experience in organising scientific congresses/symposia of a considerable size (100+ participants).
  • The scientific program must be developed/approved by an independent international scientific committee of experts to be set up by the (Co)Chairs and with combined expertise and experience in: laboratory animal science, animal welfare, animal ethics, life science education, medical research, regulatory quality and risk assessment, and 3R technologies, approaches and policy making. 
  • The meeting structure should follow in the style and include key features for which the WC are known:  plenary sessions, parallel sessions, exhibition space for both participants and vendors as well as an active social programme that encourages networking and mentoring.

Aspects that must be addressed in the proposal

  • The reason for applying for the organisation and hosting of the 13th World Congress
  • The main theme of the congress, subjects of special attention issue;
  • Details of the national support structure (such as a public sector entity) that provides the patronage;
  • The track records of the Chair and Co-Chair in the life sciences and 3Rs and in organising relatively large meetings/seminars/symposia/congresses;
  • Details of potential Congress facilities (size of the main auditorium, satellite meeting options, capacity poster area(s), etc.)
  • The name and other details of the congress management organisation, if considered;
  • Accessibility of the congress facilities for disabled people;
  • Estimated congress budget, expected number of participants and anticipated registration fee;
  • Nearest airport for international flights;
  • Hotel facilities (ranging from economic/basic for students and low budget participants to comfortable/luxury)

Applications should be sent to the ACT Board in care of the Chair, Dr. Elaine Faustman, copied to the Secretary, Dr. Gilly Griffith and Treasurer, Dr. Thomas Hartung

The ACT Board thanks you for your interest in hosting this international congress.