Throughout the academic year, LEAP brings thought-provoking visitors to campus from the field of law and beyond. These speakers include lawmakers, scientists, investigative journalists, artists, authors, philosophers, advocates, and scholars who focus in diverse ways on understanding and improving humans’ understanding and treatment of other animals. These leading thinkers and doers visit campus to inspire, deepen, and elevate conversations, and to enrich and inform LEAP’s work. View our past events here.

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Recent Events


October 28 Wednesday

Perilous Bounty: A Book Talk with Tom Philpott

The agricultural landscape in the United States appears bleak: gluttonous agri-corporations extract fertility from the soil and labor from workers.

October 21 Wednesday

What about Bugs? Why Insects Urgently Need Human Empathy & Action

Many studies from Europe, North American, and most recently the tropics, are reporting worrisome insect declines. Even insects that humans care for directly--honeybees, butterflies, and other pollinators--have been suffering their own public health crises. The reduction in bug populations  amounts to an excavation at the base of the food web that could unwind ecosystems around the world. Behind the question of what to do about the “insect apocalypse” lurks another challenge--how can entomologists and writers convince people to preserve such alien creatures?

October 14 Wednesday

The Deregulation of the American Food System: How it Happened and a Way Forward

Join LEAP for an online lunch talk with Austin Frerick, deputy director of Yale's Thurman Arnold Project, an interdisciplinary center for antitrust enforcement and competition policy.

September 22 Tuesday

The “Pickle in the Middle”: The Competitive Issues Facing America’s Farmers

Please join the Thurman Arnold Project and the Law, Ethics, & Animals Program for an online lunch talk featuring Peter Carstensen on the topics below. Professor Carstensen is a senior fellow at the American Antitrust Institute, former attorney at the Antitrust Division at the Depatrment of Justice, and professor of law emeritus at the University of Wisconsin--Madison School of Law.

September 9 Wednesday

Rampant Covid-19 Infections & AWOL OSHA: Fighting Back Against the Exploitation of America’s Meatpacking Workers

More than 80 percent of frontline meatpacking workers are Black and Brown, more than half are immigrants, and nearly half live in families with incomes below 200 percent of the federal poverty line.

September 2 Wednesday

Shrinking, Gasping, & Disappearing Fish: How climate change & fishing policy impact marine ecosystems and the bold actions needed to protect ocean health

Beneath the waves, marine ecosystems are suffering. Climate change is making the world’s oceans hotter, more acidic, and less oxygen rich at a time when fish already face warlike industrial overfishing around the globe. Human pressures are causing fisheries to disappear, driving marine animals towards the poles, shrinking the size of fish bodies, fueling cyclones and floods, and shifting currents.

April 21 Tuesday

Cancelled: "Meat Planet: Artificial Flesh and the Future of Food" with Author Ben Wurgaft


Join the Yale Sustainable Food Program and the Law, Ethics, and Animals Program for a book conversation with Benjamin Wurgaft, author of Meat Planet: Artificial Flesh and the Future of Food. Meat Planet explores the modern quest to generate meat in the lab—a substance sometimes called “cultured meat”—and asks what it means to imagine that this is the fut

April 8 Wednesday

Cancelled: "The Rule of Five: Making Climate History at the Supreme Court" - A Book Talk by Richard Lazarus


Harvard Law Professor Richard Lazarus will speak about his new book, "The Rule of Five: Making Climate History at the Supreme Court" (Harvard University Press, forthcoming March 2020).

March 25 Wednesday

Cancelled: "Environmental Injustice: How Animal Agriculture Destroys Disadvantaged Communities" with Marianne Engelman-Lado


Marianne Engelman-Lado joins us to discuss the environmental destruction caused by factory farms, which disproportionately affects marginalized communities across the country. Engelman-Lado joined Earthjustice in 2010 as Chair of the Environmental Health Practice Group, focusing on toxics, pesticides, waste, the health impacts of industrial agriculture, civil rights enforcement, and the effects of environmental contamination on vulnerable and overburdened populations.

March 3 Tuesday

"The Future of Food: Plant-based and Cultivated Meat" with Annie Osborn

Activists and entrepreneurs alike have touted plant-based and cultivated meat alternatives as breakthrough innovations that will solve many of the problems associated with animal agriculture. Good Food Institute’s Annie Osborn joins us to speak about the current market trends, environmental goals, and legal and policy obstacles faced by the cultivated and plant-based food industry.


Other Events on Campus

The questions animals raise are highly interdisciplinary. Multiple Yale centers and programs are deeply engaged in and regularly host events to do with issues of animal law and ethics. These include:

The Yale Sustainable Foods Project’s Lazarus Events Series invites speakers to campus with a range of perspectives on and theories of food systems change. These guests include practitioners, academics, policymakers, advocates, and activists who generate critical thinking and discussion about food and agriculture, and their relationships to human values, science, and society.

Yale Macmillan Center Program in Agrarian Studies hosts a weekly colloquium organized around an annual theme. Invited specialists send papers in advance that are the focus of organized discussions by the faculty and graduate students associated with the colloquium.

The Environmental Humanities Initiative hosts and promotes campus events featuring humanities, science, and social science scholars focused on raising new research questions and providing fresh ways to approach long-standing issues in the humanities during this moment of profound environmental transformation.

The Yale Interdisciplinary Center for Bioethics’s Animal Ethics Study Group sponsors monthly lunch-time seminars and public lectures related to animal ethics issues throughout the academic year. For more information or to be added to their email list for upcoming study group meetings, reach out to