Research Centre for Sex, Gender and Sexualities

Durham Research Centre for Sex, Gender and Sexualities

Society and policy without boundaries

The Centre for Sex, Gender and Sexualities has evolved from the highly successful Gender and Sexuality Research Network based at Durham University.

With an active network of scholars comprised of over 50 academic and postgraduate research members of Durham University, the Centre is unique in that its members span the arts, social sciences, health and sciences and taking as its core interest the complex and diverse interrelationships between sex as well as gender and sexualities. The Centre for Sex, Gender and Sexualities is associated with the Wolfson Research Institute.

Addressing worldwide issues relating to all three themes, the Centre positions Durham as a leader in this field, with the capacity to shape future gender and sexuality, equality and diversity research agendas.

About the Centre

Research with impact

The Centre will develop engaging and at times provocative research themes and questions which draw in a broad range of researchers and deliver tangible public benefit and impact. There are a variety of key questions that the Centre seeks to address:

  • How might we maximize the economic impact on organisations committed to sexuality and gender diversity of working with organisations or nations that are not?
  • How do issues of sex, gender and sexualities shape and impact upon the provision of security, justice and democracy in a global context or within and across populations in conflict?
  • How can the ideals of equality and diversity, along with the social cohesion they enhance, be promoted in practice?
  • What can the study of sex, gender and sexualities bring to our understanding of specific areas of national and international policy (ie education, housing, pensions, welfare)?
  • How does the study of sex, gender and sexualities impact upon, contribute to or otherwise shape the core and parent disciplines in the sciences, social sciences and arts and humanities, if at all – and if it does not, should it?
  • What is the provision of sexual health and well­being in the context of incarcerated populations, and how might it be improved?

Our vision is to have a multi­disciplinary leading research institute which acts as a hub for staff and students working in or concerned with LGBQT issues, sex, sexuality and gender diversity

Working to understand lives

Societies and cultures across the world have experienced large scale social changes as new definitions of femininities, masculinities and even heterosexuality (now as metrosexuality and cybersexualities) are emerging.

In the last few decades, there have been seismic changes across a range of countries in the ways that sex, sexualities and gender are expressed, regulated and understood. These changes have affected the ways in which we all experience the world around us.

Yet, despite our advances in understanding and the changes that many societies have experienced with regard to increasing tolerance of diversity, commitment to gender equality and Lesbian, Gay, Bi­sexual, Queer and Transgender (LGBQT) rights, there is still much more work to be done.

The study of sex, gender and sexualities is an intellectually vibrant, broad reaching and critical area of research. At the heart of the Centre is its robust academic research work. The Centre seeks also to maximise the impact of its research by acting as a bridge between researchers and other stakeholders, such as policy makers, lawyers, educationalists, social and community workers, and corporate and social enterprises, to deliver research which has tangible public benefit and impact.

Tackling global issues

The Centre seeks to understand the ways that sex, gender and sexualities shape, inform and influence national and global social and political issues including security, economy, justice, democracy, ethics, conflict and welfare provision. Operating without intellectual or academic borders, the Centre explores how historical, artistic and philosophical insight shapes and regulates issues of equality and diversity in these three domains.

More needs to be done to understand better the conditions of existence for men, women, LGBTQ populations across the world. It is known that outcomes for LGBTQ people in relation to mental health, education and income remain low. Young LGBQT people face higher rates of suicide than other groups, and discrimination and violence based on gender and sexuality mark the lives of many LGBQT people and women.

Research has confirmed that in terms of gender, women still earn less than 75% of men’s income and gender diversity and equality in senior leadership have been identified as real and pertinent challenges for many organisations.

We will explore the vital questions of equality and diversity in societies across the world to inform practices and policies.

How to join

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