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01522 83 5453
University of Lincoln
Brayford Pool
United Kingdom

About Oliver Burman

I am interested in studying fundamental aspects of behaviour and cognition that underpin advances in animal welfare, including:    - The study of animal vocalizations (i.e. what do they mean, both for the vocalizing individual and for other animals that hear those vocalizations? Can we ‘eavesdrop’ on vocalizations in order to determine how an animal feels?)    - The development of novel cognitive methods to assess affective state in a range of animal species (i.e. do the decisions that animals make inform us about their background emotional state or mood?)    - Social recognition, memory and ‘forgetting’ in non-human animals (i.e. for how long do individuals remember one another?)    - Social interactions as an indicator of animal welfare (i.e. do subtle changes in how individuals interact within and between groups give an indication of welfare status?)

Department Responsibilities

Module Leader for ‘Animal Welfare Science’ (Level Three, undergraduate) Module Leader for ‘Animal Welfare’ (MSc Clinical Animal Behaviour) I also supervise undergraduate and postgraduate research projects in a variety of areas.

Subject Specialism

Animal Behaviour, Cognition & Welfare


  • PhD — 2001
  • MSc Applied Animal Behaviour Science & Animal Welfare — 1997
  • BSc (Hons) Biology — 1994

Orcid ID


Research Interests

  • animal behaviour

  • Animal Cognition

  • animal welfare

Research Groups Memberships

  • Animal Behaviour, Cognition & Welfare

Research Projects

  • Automated predictive welfare assessment in groups of fish — NC3Rs project grant in 2016
  • Effect of containment on domestic cat behaviour and welfare — Feline Friends in 2012
  • Measures of food preference in domestic cats — Waltham Centre for Pet Nutrition (MARS) in 2012
  • Sensitivity to reward change: a novel cognitive approach to understanding and measuring affective state in animals — BBSRC Research Grant in 2012

Research in the Lincoln Repository

Professional Affiliations

  • NC3Rs — Grant Assessment Panel Member
  • Applied Animal Behaviour Science (Journal) — Member of the Editorial Advisory Board
  • BVAAWF/FRAME/RSPCA/UFAW) Joint Working Group — Invited expert
  • BIAZA Elephant Welfare Group — Member of the Behaviour Sub-Group