Last year Israel Ramos was awarded the 2016-2017 California Pre-Doctoral Scholarship, allowing him the opportunity to participate in doctoral level research and scholarship this summer in a doctoral granting institution of his choice and under the guidance of a professor of his choice. Israel chose the History Department at MIT in order to work with Dr. Harriet Ritvo, due to her renowned expertise in animal history. His research will focus on human-rabbit relations. His two proposed topics consists of looking at rabbits in the biomedical research field and the other proposal would look at endangered rabbit species in Brazil, Mexico, Japan, South Africa, and the US. The former proposal would aim to demonstrate how rabbits entered the realm of animal testing and in turn analyze how effective the usage of rabbits have been in making medical advancements. The latter proposal would attempt to answer how has human activity affected the population decline of these rabbits?
Broadly speaking Israel's research interests are in the field of global environmental history with a specific interest in animal studies. This field examines the global past in ways that are increasingly useful for policies of the present and future by showing us how at an unprecedented rate we have refashioned the earth's biosphere. Using the subfield of animal studies, he aims to explore the role of non-human animals in human history by exploring how different species of animals have influenced and have been influenced by political movements, globalization, as well as economic and environmental developments. Inspired by total liberation philosophy, Israel works to shed light on how enduring examples of how the oppression of humans, non-human animals, and our eco-system are linked. Ultimately, he hopes to integrate his academic research with political engagement and activism.