Burning Questions
Beacon Series

A series of key messages from works by academics useful for answering burning questions on tackling industrial animal agriculture in developing countries.


  • Tiny Beam Fund's flagship Burning Questions Initiative produces a list of ‘burning questions’. These questions were contributed by over 25 organizations and funders critical of and working to tackle industrial animal agriculture, especially concerning low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). These questions focus on topics that they would most like academic researchers to address and answer.

  • Every ‘burning question’ is complex and multifaceted. It would be foolish to believe that there is a single, simple, definitive answer to a question.

  • Addressing these questions requires welding together many pieces of nuanced, contextualized information, research findings, and perspectives drawn from a broad knowledge base, a rich knowledge bank of studies by academic researchers. It also requires extracting key messages from these studies.

  • This welding and extracting endeavor is arduous. But, “a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step”. We hope that our curated series of key messages – named Beacon – will serve as a beacon, guiding all those keen to take the first step.

Who's the audience?

  • Those who have contributed to the ‘burning questions’, those who are curious about these questions, those who are interested in using the research undertaken by academics to address the questions.

  • Anyone can access Beacon on our website. It is easy to read and understand. No academic jargon!

What's in it?

  • Each issue contains 6-8 main items. These are works by academic researchers in peer-reviewed journals from the past couple of years. Also included are reports written for Tiny Beam Fund by recipients of its Burning Questions Initiative fellowship awards (they are all PhD holders or PhD students close to obtaining their degrees). 1-2 ‘Brief mention’ non-academic reports may also be included.

BQI Beacon: Issue #2

April 2024
Eight works by academics are featured and they cover these topics: 1) Global poultry genetics companies' power in Africa. 2) Diets in LMICs shaped by complex food environment. 3) Tradeoffs required to make livestock systems climate-friendly. 4) Asian industrial broiler production's wide range of problems. 5) EU food strategies can improve LMICs' animal welfare. 6) Tactics to sell industrial chicken products in Guatemala. 7) Egypt's poultry industry harbors avian flu and gets subsidies. 8) Problematic claims made by dairy companies in China.

BQI Beacon: Issue #1

October 2023
Eight works by academics are featured and they cover these topics: 1) Government policies shaping aquaculture. 2) Industrial livestock production in China. 3) Large investors' interest in animal welfare. 4) Environmental pressures from different foods. 5) Implementing international animal welfare standards. 6) Cage-free egg production in China. 7) Game meat production in South Africa. 8) Meat consumption reduction in Brazil.

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