Alfred Research Alliance Animal Ethics Governance and Policy Committee

The Governance and Policy (GAP) Committee is responsible for development of policies, education of members and users, dispute resolution, reporting and auditing. The Alfred Research Alliance AECs report to the Alfred Research Alliance institutions via the Animal Ethics GAP Committee.

Terms of Reference and Operating Procedures

Alfred Research Alliance AEC Governance and Policy Committee Terms of Reference and Operating Procedures – February 2021


The AMREP AEC ensures that the care and use of animals at AMREP complies with the Victorian Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1986 and its incorporated Australian code of practice for the care and use of animals for scientific purposes 2013. The Australian Code encompasses all aspects of the care and use of animals for scientific purposes, and provides guidelines for the humane conduct of scientific activities. The Code of Practice incorporates the principles of replacement, reduction and refinement.

The 3 Rs

The Code of Practice emphasises the responsibilities of all those involved in the care and use of animals. This embraces a duty of care that demands a genuine commitment to the welfare of the animals, a respect for the contribution the animals make to research and teaching and a desire to promote the animals’ well-being.

Projects using animals may be performed only after the AEC has decided that they are justified, weighing the predicted scientific or educational value of the projects against the potential effects on the welfare of the animals.

Investigators must submit written proposals to the AEC for all animal projects which must take into account the expected value of the knowledge to be gained, the justification for the project, and all ethical and animal welfare aspects taking into consideration the 3Rs.

Definition of the 3 Rs

  • Replacement of animals with other methods.
    Seek alternatives which replace or complement the use of animals.
    Refer to Section 1.18-1.20 in the Code of Practice.
  • Reduction in numbers of animals used.
    Studies must be scientifically and statistically valid and must use the minimal numbers possible. Do not repeat activities using animals unnecessarily.
    Refer to Sections 1.21–1.27 in the Code of Practice.
  • Refinement of techniques to reduce the impact on animals. Choose the most suitable species for the purpose of the investigation. Use the best available technique and be competent in the procedures. Develop suitable measures of animal pain and distress, e.g. observation sheets and use of analgesia. Refer to Sections 1.28–1.30 in the Code of Practice

NHMRC Documents
Australian code of practice for the care and use of animals for scientific purposes, 8th edition, 2013

Guidelines to promote the wellbeing of animals used for scientific purposes: the assessment and alleviation of pain and distress in research animals, 2008 

Victorian Department of Primary Industries – Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Legislation

NHMRC Animal Research Ethical Issues

Office of the Gene Technology Regulator

Researcher Resources 

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