gender and sexualities

Aims and scope of the programme

The Genders and Sexualities Programme of PsyCen is comprised of psychologists who have an interest in identities defined in terms of gender and/or sexuality and issues related to gender and sexuality. These include (amongst others) body image concerns and body management practices; sexual violence and abuse; and poverty, austerity and psychological wellbeing. We are a diverse group in terms of the approaches that we employ, which include critical psychological and discursive approaches as well as more mainstream, quantitative work. Many members of the programme are also scholar-activists, seeking to conduct work that will tackle inequalities based on gender and/or sexuality. In the Research Excellence Framework, the programme primarily contributes to REF Unit 4: Psychology, Psychiatry & Neuroscience, but some members also contribute to REF units such as Unit 20: Social Work & Social Policy and Unit 23: Education. 


Externally funded projects

Professor Brendan Gough, Professor Michael Kehler (University of Calgary) & Adam Lowe

This project is an international qualitative research study examining an innovative process to empower sportsmen as agents of change for LGBT inclusion, gender equality and better male mental health. Funded by Worldwide Roar/Sport Allies (£100k), this 18-month project will explore athlete stories of masculinity, body image and allyship as they participate in Worldwide Roar events and engage with LGBT+ communities.

Professor Elizabeth Letourneau (Johns Hopkins University, USA), Dr Tamara Turner-Moore & Professor Mitch Waterman (University of Leeds)

This international collaboration entails a mixed-methods study exploring the sexual thoughts of men who have a sexual attraction to children, including men who have never acted on these thoughts and men who have, to understand how they can be supported in (continuing) living crime-free lives. Jointly funded by the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health (Baltimore, USA), Leeds Beckett University & University of Leeds. 


Dr Tamara Turner-Moore, Professor Sarah Brown (University of the Sunshine Coast, Australia) & Stuart Alladyce (Lucy Faithful Foundation)

This project explores the broad impacts of the criminal justice system on men investigated for child sexual abuse imagery. It is a 50% match-funded PhD studentship, jointly funded by the Lucy Faithful Foundation and Leeds Beckett University. Lynsey Fenwick was appointed to the studentship, which comprises a scoping review and two qualitative longitudinal studies. Lynsey’s supervisory team includes Dr Turner-Moore, Professor Brown, Stuart Alladyce and Dr Paula Singleton. 

Internally funded projects

Dr Paula Singleton (PI), as a part of, and with, the Stigmatised Sexualities and Sexual Harm (SSSH!) research group

The SSSH! research group is working with a local consent activist, Jenny WilsonThe first part of this scheme has been funded by PsyCenJennywill be working with the research group on creative dissemination and on how all forms of consent may be relevant to their research. For further details, please see or talk to the project leader, Paula Singleton.

Key Publications

Prof Brendan Gough

The above report was published in September 2020. It focuses on masculinities, help-seeking and wider social determinants of male mental health and is based on a review of the literature within Europe and beyond. See the WHO webinar [2019] on this issue

Dr Katy Day, Dr Bridgette Rickett & Dr Maxine Woolhouse

This text, authored by members of the Genders and Sexualities Programme and published by Palgrave, was published in December 2020. The text examines (amongst other things) important intersections between social class, gender and sexuality.  

Research Groups

The Genders and Sexualities programme includes two research groups: the Stigmatised Sexualities and Sexual Harm (SSSH!) research group and the Discourse Group (DG).