Marina (Nina) von Keyserlingk

Marina (Nina) von Keyserlingk

NSERC Industrial Research Chair in Dairy Cattle Welfare

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Nina’s love of animals began at a very young age while growing up on a beef cattle ranch in the Okanagan Valley in British Columbia. After leaving the ranch, she went on to complete her Bachelor of Science degree in Agricultural Science at UBC, and her Master of Science degree in Animal Science at the University of Alberta. She returned to UBC to complete her Ph.D. in Animal Sciences in 1995. After graduating, she worked in a variety of roles in the agribusiness sector before joining the Animal Welfare Program in 2002 as the third faculty member.

The majority of Nina’s work has focused on the under-researched areas of behaviour, housing and management and how these contribute to farm animal welfare. Her work has impacted animal care on farms around the world. In addition to this, she has also published in the disciplines of companion and laboratory animal welfare. Together with her students and collaborators, she has published over 280 peer-reviewed publications. She is also among the first in her field to combine experimental and qualitative methods when addressing animal welfare issues. In 2012 she published her first social science paper; since then, she has published more than 30 journal articles on topics within the field of social sciences, covering topics such as public attitudes to contentious issues in farm animal care and understanding barriers to adoption of proven animal welfare practices by farmers.

She is internationally recognized as a leader in her field and in 2018 was awarded the Hans Sigrist Research Prize (Bern, Switzerland) for her outstanding scientific contributions to the sustainability of food of animal origin. She is a Director of the National Farm Animal Health and Welfare Council of Canada and also sits as a scientific advisory on the Danone Global Animal Welfare council and the A&W national animal welfare council; councils that set out to provide guidance on animal welfare standards on farms.

Nina is actively involved in graduate student mentoring. She also encourages undergraduates to engage in research and provides many opportunities for training in animal welfare science at the undergraduate level including several undergraduate courses. Nina co-teaches APBI 398, Research Methods in Applied Biology, and is frequently a supervisor to undergraduate students through directed studies and undergraduate thesis. Nina also collaborates with researchers at other institutions and has supported the development of young scientists through the Emerging Leaders of Americas Program.

For more information see Dr. von Keyserlingk’s faculty page


B.Sc. (Agr.) Honours (UBC)
M.Sc. (Alberta)
Ph.D. (UBC)