Clinical Professor Philip Tedeschi
Clinical Professor & Executive Director-Institute for Human-Animal Connection
Philip Tedeschi is a faculty of the Graduate School of Social Work at The University of Denver. He is recognized for expertise in the clinical methods for Animal Assisted Interventions and coordinates the school's Animal-Assisted Social Work Certificate program for Master of Social Work (MSW) students, as well as serving as The Executive Director for the Institute for Human-Aninmal Connection. He received his MSSW degree for the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where his specialization was the bio-affiliative connection between people and animals. His scholarship, clinical expertise and teaching focus on forensic social work, at-risk and vulenerable populations, trauma informed intervention, animal assisted interventions, human-animal interaction, human ecology, environmental social work, wildlife and companion animal welfare and conservation and international perspectives on one-health.
He is internationally recognized for research, scholarship, training and practice focused on human-animal interaction with focus on both the therapeutic potential of animal’s in human health, the ethics of human-animal interaction as well as public safety and public health risk factors associated with cruelty and violence. He teaches practitioners best practice and evidence supported clinical methods for Animal Assisted Interventions. Professor Tedeschi co-founded of the Institute for Human–Animal Connection programs at the University of Denver.
Professor Tedeschi is a certified Master Therapeutic Riding Instructor, former Course Director and Instructor with Outward Bound and a wilderness emergency medical technician. His clinical areas of inquiry and specialization have include non-traditional therapeutic approaches with children, adults and families as well as program development and intervention in interpersonal violence. He has specialized in empathy development and attachment, trauma remediation, assessment and intervention with animal abusers and individuals who engage in interpersonal forms of human cruelty and violence. He has worked extensively in the treatment of victims of abuse, men who abuse and models of humane education.
Some of Philip Tedeschi’s best friends are animals. He has studied and teaches about the intricate relationship between people, domestic and wild animals and the natural world.
"It is a rewarding opportunity to work with animals, often our most reliable and uncomplicated relationships. They teach us so much about ourselves, about being human and fortunately are such patient teachers ”
In the field
- Human-Animal Interaction, Invited Speaker, Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing and USDA Animal Welfare Information Center, Symposium on Social Housing of Laboratory Animals, Denver, Colorado, USA
- State of the Wild, University of Denver Institute for Human-Animal Connection, Denver, Colorado, USA
- Pin the Tail on the Donkey: Protocol to Evaluate Risk and Improve Accuracy in Forensic Animal Cruelty Evaluations, Colorado Association of Animal Control Officers Annual Conference, Blackhawk, Colorado, USA
- The New Work of Intervention and Assistance Dogs: Beyond the Five Freedoms, Assistance Dogs International Conference, Keynote, Denver, Colorado, USA
- The Role of Animals in Human- Health, Temple Grandin Center for Equine Therapies- Symposium, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado, USA
- Protocol to Evaluate Risk and Improve Accuracy in Forensic Animal Cruelty Evaluations, National Center for the Prosecution of Animal Abuse, National District Attorneys Association, National Webinar
- Transforming Trauma, Research Developments and Methods for Trauma-Informed Animal Assisted Intervention, University of Denver, Denver, Colorado, USA
- Global Practice - Preparing Students to Address Issues of One Health, Biodiversity Conservation, Animal Welfare and Social-Ecological Resilience, The First Annual Internationalization Summit, University of Denver, Denver, Colorado, USA
- Nature’s Social Union: The Study of the Human-Animal Connection, Global Risk Forum, United Nations, Davos, Switzerland
Animal Assisted Social Work
"There is some good in this world, and it's worth fighting for" - J.R.R. Tolkien, author
Projects and Activities
INSTITUTE FOR HUMAN-ANIMAL CONNECTION
Vision and Values
The Institute for Human-Animal Connection believes it is important to intentionally elevate the value of the living world around us and promotes the exploration of this connection through the lens of contemporary education, science, research, advocacy and ethics with respect for all species.
We believe responsible and respectful interaction with animals and the environment is necessary to establish global and ecological stability, sustainability and equality.
The quest for new knowledge about human-animal connections and social-ecological systems must reflect respect for social justice, cultural diversity and beneficial social change.
Animal and human lives intersect in ways that are most often beneficial to both but can, at times, be detrimental. We are committed to exploring both the evidence-supported benefits and risks of human-animal interactions.
Human-animal connections occur at the individual level but also extend to natural physical environments and to relationships within the family, community, broader society and the global village. We endorse a framework of conservation social work and One Health that acknowledges these interrelations at multiple levels and encourages multidisciplinary and collaborative approaches.
The therapeutic partnership with animals for the improvement of human physical and mental health must ensure that animals also benefit and are treated within ethical and humane guidelines.
We are dedicated to preparing professional social workers to foster informed, grassroots community resilience. Just as we are prepared to recognize the ugly face of discrimination and prejudice and openly label racial discrimination as immoral and illegal, we must prepare the profession to do the same on behalf of the living world that is our only home.
Our relationship with Earth is an enduring feature of our lives, homes and communities and modern understanding has rekindled acceptance of non-human animals and the natural environment as important contributors to our lives.
Exploring the powerful relationship between people and animals