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Birgitta Staaf Larsson

Birgitta Staaf Larsson
I work as a qualified officer at the Swedish Centre for Animal Welfare (SCAW) and since December 2014 I am a part time PhD student at the Department of Anatomy, Physiology and Biochemistry (AFB). The purpose of my research is to investigate whether it is possible to improve official animal welfare control by using more animal-based parameters.


I studied Biology and Environmental Science as well as several animal welfare courses at the University. After that, I worked as an animal welfare inspector in Lilla Edet and Mark municipalities. After five years as an animal welfare inspector, I worked a couple of years at the Swedish Board of Agriculture with animal welfare during transport. During my years at the Swedish Board of Agriculture, I was appointed as an expert in the state investigation SOU 2003:6 ‘Sensitive beings or insensitive goods’ about long-distance animal transports in the EU. Year 2002-2012 I worked as a university lecturer with animal welfare educations at SLU in Skara, where we developed the Ethology and Animal Welfare bachelor program. I worked as an animal welfare inspector at the County Administrative Board in Västra Götaland County for a few months before I got the job at SCAW. A donation from the Swedish Animal Welfare Association 2014 made it possible for me to do a PhD investigating the use of animal-based parameters in the official control.


During my employment at SLU in Skara, I performed a lot of teaching and was responsible for courses in year 1 (Animal Protection, Welfare and Ethics 1) and year 3 (Animal Welfare, Control and Assessment) at the Ethology and Animal Welfare Program (EoD). I also conducted continuing and further education for active animal welfare officers. I still have lectures at the course Animal Welfare, Control and Assessment at EoD and for Master students.


I do research about how to improve official control by using more animal-based parameters. I have performed studies at Lövsta Livestock Research Centre, Uppsala and Röbäcksdalen, Umeå about if it is possible for the control authority to check that dairy cows get enough water, by measuring the osmolality in milk. I also study thermal comfort by evaluating different thermometers and thermal imaging cameras. Another part of my research is to investigate how different occupations assess cattle cleanliness and body condition in order to find out if and how occupation, education and experience affect the assessments.


At SCAW, we have collaborated with other countries for several years, e.g. through our Nordic/Baltic network Nordic network for Communicating Animal Welfare (NordCAW). We have regular meetings and have an annual NordCAW conference about different animal welfare topics.

In June 2019, SCAW became a World Organisation for Animal Health, WOAH Collaborating Center for Animal Welfare together with IZS-Teramo, Italy. In November 2020, the European Commission designated the European Union Reference Center for the welfare of ruminants and equines to Sweden (SCAW) in collaboration with Italy, France, Austria, Ireland and Greece.

Selected publications

Keeling LJ, Marier EA, Olmos Antillón G, Blokhuis HJ, Staaf Larsson B and Stuardo L (2022) A global study to identify a potential basis for policy options when integrating animal welfare into the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Front. Anim. Sci. 3:974687. doi: 10.3389/fanim.2022.974687

Lambraki IA, Cousins M, Graells T, Léger A, Abdelrahman S, Desbois AP, Gallagher R, Staaf Larsson B, Mattson B, Henriksson P, Troell M, Søgaard Jørgensen P, Wernli D, Carson CA, Parmley EJ and Majowicz SE (2022) Governing Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) in a Changing Climate: A Participatory Scenario Planning Approach Applied to Sweden in 2050.Front. Public Health 10:831097.doi: 10.3389/fpubh.2022.831097

Staaf Larsson, B., Petersson, E., Stéen, M. and Hultgren, J. 2020. Visual assessment of body condition and skin soiling in cattle by professionals and undergraduate students using photo slides Acta Acta Agriculturae Scandinavica, Section A — Animal Science DOI: 10.1080/09064702.2020.1849380

Berg, C., Hansson, H., Herlin, A., Hultgren, J., Jacobson, M., Jansson, A., Jarmar,
A., Jeppson,K-H., Keeling, L., Kolstrup, C., Lindahl, C., Lundmark Hedman, F.,
Rydhmer, L., Staaf Larsson, B., Salomon, E., Sandberg, E., Stéen, M., Wall H.
(2020). Utegående nötkreatur och får. Uppsala: Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet. 978-91-576-9795-0 (elektronisk)
(Rapporter från SLUs vetenskapliga råd för djurskydd, 2020:5)

Staaf Larsson, B., Keeling, L.J., Hjerpe, E. 2013. Statistics on crimes committed to animals and changes in the animal welfare control in Sweden. The ethics on consumption, The citizen, the market and the law, EurSafe 2013 Conference abstract. Wageningen Academic Publishers

Staaf Larsson, B., Keeling, L.J., Hjerpe, E. 2012. Statistik över brott mot djurskyddslagen och djurplågeri - Förändringar i djurskyddskontrollen efter övergång från kommun till länsstyrelse. Svensk veterinärtidning 4/2012

Staaf Larsson, B., Keeling, L.J., Berg, C., Larsson, M. 2012. Djurskyddslagstiftningens tillämpning och efterlevnad, rapport till Kungliga Skogs- och Lantbruksakademien

Redovisning av uppdrag om minskad stress för djur vid transporter; L 2011/2398. 2012. Jordbruksverket och Nationellt centrum för djurvälfärd                           

Sentient beings or insentient goods. [Kännande varelser eller okänsliga varor.] 2003. Fritzes Offentliga Publikationer. Stockholm. SOU 2003:6,


Senior Administrative Officer at the Department of Anatomy, Physiology and Biochemistry (AFB); Division of Anatomy and Physiology Senior Administrative Officer at the SCAW Nationellt centrum för djurvälfärd
Telephone: +4618672157, +46730421911
Postal address:
Institutionen för anatomi, fysiologi och biokemi
Box 7011
Visiting address: VHC Huvudentré, Ulls väg 26, hus 5, plan 4, Uppsala
Postal address:
Box 7053
750 07 Uppsala
Visiting address: Ulls väg 26, plan 5, Uppsala