Using animals in food and food production systems is one of many drivers of novel zoonoses. Moving toward less dependence on animal proteins is a possible avenue for reducing pandemic risk, but we think that Wiebers & Feigin’s proposed change to food policy (phasing out animal meat production) is unrealistic in its political achievability and its current capacity to feed the world in a cost-effective and sustainable manner. We suggest that improvements in communication strategies, precipitated by developments in computational cognitive neuroscience, can lead the way to a safer future and are feasible now.
Tyler Davis is Associate Professor of Psychological Sciences at Texas Tech University. His research is in computational neuroscience and its applications to health and consumer topics. Current projects focus on how cognitive processes contribute to One Health topics such as adoption of food and animal welfare technologies and zoonosis. Website
Molly Ireland is Assistant Professor of Psychological Sciences at Texas Tech University. She studies how language influences and reflects social processes underlying physical and mental health. She uses computational linguistic methods to study One Health issues such as health behavior intentions and social perception in pandemics. Website
Jason Van Allen is Associate Professor of Psychological Sciences at Texas Tech University. He studies individual characteristics and environmental factors associated with health behavior, including the role of human-animal interactions in health outcomes. Website
Darrell Worthy is Associate Professor of Psychological and Brain Sciences at Texas A&M University. He studies individual differences in learning and decision-making. His current work focuses on how individual differences in personality, age, and other factors predict differences in decision-making behavior. Website
Since October 29, 2020