Professor Marc Bekoff (USA)

Marc Bekoff is Professor of Biology at the University of Colorado, Boulder, and is a Fellow of the Animal Behavior Society and a former Guggenheim Fellow.

In 2000 he was awarded the Exemplar Award from the Animal Behavior Society for major long-term contributions to the field of animal behaviour.

Professor Bekoff is also regional coordinator for Jane Goodall's Roots & Shoots program, in which he works with students of all ages, senior citizens and prisoners, and also is a member of the Ethics Committee of the Jane Goodall Institute.

He and Dr Goodall co-founded the organization Ethologists for the Ethical Treatment of Animals: Citizens for Responsible Animal Behavior Studies in 2000.

Marc Bekoff is on the Board of Directors of The Fauna Sanctuary, The Cougar Fund, the Skyline Sanctuary and Education Center, and the Prairie Preservation Alliance and on the advisory board for Animal Defenders and for the Laboratory Primate Advocacy Group and the conservation organization SINAPU.

He has been part of the international program, Science and the Spiritual Quest II and the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) program on Science, Ethics, and Religion.

He is also an honorary member of Animalisti Italiani and Fundacion Altarriba, and on the Scientific Review Board of the Great Ape Trust. In 2006 he was named a Fellow of the Dancing Star Foundation, an honorary board member of Rational Animal, and a member of the Council of Advisors for The National Institute for Play. In 2005 Marc Bekoff was presented with The Bank One Faculty Community Service Award for the work he has done with children, senior citizens, and prisoners.

Professor Bekoff's main areas of research include animal behavior, cognitive ethology (the study of animal minds), and behavioral ecology, and he has also published extensively on animal issues.

He has published more than 200 papers and 18 books, including:

  • Nature's life lessons: Everyday truths from nature (with Jim Carrier, Fulcrum, 1996).
  • Species of mind: The philosophy and biology of cognitive ethology (with Colin Allen, MIT Press, 1997)
  • Nature's purposes: Analyses of function and design in biology (edited with Colin Allen and George Lauder, MIT Press, 1998)
  • Animal play: Evolutionary, comparative, and ecological perspectives (edited with John Byers, Cambridge University Press, 1998).
  • Encyclopedia of animal rights and animal welfare (Greenwood Publishing Group, 1998).
  • Strolling with our kin (AAVS/Lantern Books 2000).
  • The smile of a dolphin: Remarkable accounts of animal emotions (Random House/Discovery Books 2000).
  • The cognitive animal: Empirical and theoretical perspectives on animal cognition (edited with Colin Allen, and Gordon Burghardt, MIT Press, 2002)
  • Minding animals: Awareness, emotions, and heart (Oxford University Press 2003)
  • The ten trusts: What we must do to care for the animals we love (with Jane Goodall, HarperCollins, 2003).
  • Encyclopedia of Animal Behavior, 3 volumes (ed., Greenwood Publishing Group, 2004).
  • Animal Passions and Beastly Virtues: Reflections on Redecorating Nature ( Temple University Press 2006).
  • The Emotional Lives of Animals: A Leading Scientist Explores Animal Joy, Sorrow, and Empathy and Why They Matter will be published in March 2007 by New World Library.

Professor Bekoff is currently writing a book on the evolution of cooperation and morality in animals titled Wild Justice and Fair Play: Cooperation, Forgiveness, and Morality in Animals for the University of Chicago Press. He is also editing a four-volume Encyclopedia of Human-Animal Relationships: A Global Exploration of our Connections with Animals for Greenwood Publishing Group that will be published in June 2007, and with Cara Blessley Lowe, editing a book of readings on cougars titled Listening to Cougar. In late 2007 Shambhala Publications will be issuing a revised and updated edition of Strolling With Our Kin, titled Animals Matter.

Marc Bekoff's work has been featured on 48 Hours, in Time Magazine, Life Magazine, U.S. News and World ReportThe New York TimesNew Scientist BBC WildlifeOrionScientific American, Ranger RickNational Geographic Kids, on NPR, BBC, Fox, Natur GEO, in a National Geographic Society television special ("Play: The Nature of the Game"), in Discovery TV's "Why Dogs Smile and Chimpanzees Cry," and in Animal Planet's "The Power of Play" and National Geographic Society's "Hunting in America". He has also appeared on CNN and Good Morning America.