I am a PhD Candidate at the University of New England. My research is dual focused, examining horse-human relationships and worker occlusion in the horseracing industries of Australia and New Zealand. With 45 years' experience in equestrian and horseracing, I question current perceptions of equine agency as expressed by scientific inquiry. I refute claims asserting limitations of intelligence by empowering anecdotal experiences portraying higher learning, in particular, the ability to reason. I view this research as a means to intervene in the current national conversation concerning welfare in horseracing, which fails to adequately consider the knowledges of industry workers engaged in horse-human relationships, and to bring an alternative perspective to recommendations made recently by an independent body examining welfare in the sport, which seeks to elevate scientific inquiry over lived experience.
A research-led practice project, I am writing a memoir coupled with an exegesis, both forms reflecting my interest in animal representation.