This research network brings together a range of academics and scholars, all of which share a common interest in exploring how sexed bodies come to matter in their respective research fields and a common commitment to ensuring that a space within academia is kept open for those explorations. We will reflect on the importance of sexed bodies for health and welfare. We will critique the constraining stereotypes of gender. We will provide a hub through which theories and research can be shared and exchanged and will host workshops and an annual one-day conference. Our events will be maximally accessible. We aim to foster evidence-based and rigorous research in this burgeoning field and explore ways to foster maximum knowledge exchange, impact on policy and ideas and dissemination.
To hear about the Gender Critical Research Network and what we are about listen to our launching podcast.
We encourage membership from across all faculties and from outside the University. We also encourage involvement from PGR, academics and researchers who are interested to understand and know more about what is meant by ‘gender critical’ research.
The Co-Convenors of the group are Professor Jo Phoenix (Jo.Phoenix@open.ac.uk), Chair in Criminology, and Dr Jon Pike (Jon.Pike@open.ac.uk), Senior Lecturer in Philosophy. Both are happy to field enquiries.
Professor Jo Phoenix joined the Open University as Chair in Criminology in August 2016. Jo’s research interests include gender, sexualities and justice, youth justice and punishment, the production of criminological knowledge and research ethics. These general interests have meant that I have studied and written about a wide variety of subjects including managerialism and ethics in the production of criminological knowledge, prostitution, prostitution policy reform, child sexual exploitation, sex and its regulation, youth penality and youth justice practice and policy.
For more information visit Jo's profile.
Dr Jon Pike joined the Open University in 1998, as Staff Tutor and Lecturer in Philosophy in the South East Region. He has written on his major teaching topic: political philosophy, from level one (on Cultural Exemptions) to the MA in Philosophy which he now co-chair with Derek Matravers. Within political philosophy, Jon has written about political obligation, distributive and global justice, and he maintains an interest in both Marx and Aristotle who were the topic of his doctoral dissertation and first book. Jon’s main research interest is in the Philosophy of Sport. Pike is the current Chair of the British Philosophy of Sport Association.
For more information visit Jon's profile.
Dr Laura McGrath is as a Lecturer in Psychosocial Mental Health in the School of Psychology and Counselling. She joined the Open University in 2019, having previously worked at the University of East London where she was programme leader for Clinical and Community Psychology BSc and co-leader of the Mental Health and Social Change Research Group. Laura’s research interests cluster around the role of context – social, material and political – in experiences of health and wellbeing. This has included work looking at the role of the material environment in experiences of mental distress, the relationship between austerity and mental health, as well as an interest in non-clinical and arts-based interventions. She also has a developing interest in women’s health.
For more information visit Laura's profile.
Becky Devlin has worked as a manager in HE for over 15 years. With a background in biology she has managed curriculum in health sciences, law, finance and business. She has also led a STEM faculty research administration team and a strategic employer engagement programme. Becky is interested in research in areas of policy development and legislation, and their effects on safety and equality in society.
Jessica Evans is Senior Lecturer in the Department of Sociology, School of Social Sciences and Global Studies. Her research rests in systems and psychoanalytic approaches to organisations and culture and more broadly the place of emotions in public life in interaction with private life. Her particular interest is in the organisational dynamics of role, governance and policy – how public organisations pursue unconscious tasks at variance with their explicit and primary tasks as a consequence of their relationship with the social and cultural environment. Her early research was on visual culture, representation and disability. She also has an active interest in assessment pedagogy and the emotional aspects of learning and is a committee member of the Assessment in Higher Education network.
For more information visit Jessica's profile.
Holly Lawford-Smith is an Associate Professor in Political Philosophy at the University of Melbourne. She has worked on climate ethics, collective responsibility, and feminism. Her current research is focused on radical and gender critical feminism. She has written on gender critical issues for Aeon, Feminist Current, The Australian, The Age, The Conversation, Areo, Quillette, Crikey, and The Spectator. Her second book, Against Gender: Why We Need Gender Critical Feminism, is coming out with Oxford University Press in January 2022.
Selina Todd is Professor of Modern History at Oxford University and co-Director of the University’s Women’s Equality Research Network. Her research focuses on the history of women, feminism and class struggle in modern Britain.
Her book The People: the rise and fall of the working class 1910-2010 placed women at the centre of working-class history. It was a Sunday Times bestseller and has been translated into several languages. Her most recent funded project examined the importance of sex-disaggregated data in policy making.
For more information visit her website: selinatodd.com.
Dr. Tomas Bogardus is Associate Professor of Philosophy at Pepperdine University. His research on gender critically evaluates recent revisionary projects of “conceptual engineering,” as well as common arguments in the literature against biologically based definitions of terms like “woman” and “man.”
For more information visit his website: sites.google.com/site/tbogardus.
Ingeborg Kroese is a 3rd year postgraduate student in the Faculty of WELS. Currently, she is drafting her thesis which is due to be submitted in October 2021. Her research focusses on the role of sex/ gender in corporate employee training.
Professor Rosa Freedman is the inaugural Professor of Law, Conflict and Global Development at the University of Reading. She received her LLB, LLM and PhD from the University of London, and is a non-practising barrister and member of the Honourable Society of Gray’s Inn. Freedman’s research focuses on the UN and human rights, and she has published extensively on UN human rights bodies and systems, and on UN peacekeeping and accountability for human rights abuses committed during such operations. Her published work includes three monographs, two co-edited collections, and articles in American Journal of International Law, European Journal of International Law, Leiden Journal of International Law and Human Rights Quarterly, amongst others. Freedman is a member of the UN Secretary-General’s Civil Society Advisory Board on prevention of sexual exploitation and abuse, is a Specialist Adviser on safeguarding to the UK government International Development Committee, and sits on the UK FCO Women, Peace and Security Steering Group.
For more information visit Rosa's profile.
Alice Sullivan is Professor of Sociology at University College London (UCL) and Head of Research at the UCL Social Research Institute.
Alice Sullivan’s research focusses on social and educational inequalities in the life course. She has made extensive use of secondary data analysis of large-scale longitudinal data sets in her research, with a particular focus on the British birth cohort studies of 1958, 1970 and 2000. She has published on areas including: social class and sex differences in educational attainment, single-sex and co-educational schooling, private and grammar schools, cultural capital, reading for pleasure, social mobility, and health inequalities. She has also written about conflicts between scholarly and scientific values and gender identity politics.
Kathleen Stock is a Professor of Philosophy at the University of Sussex. Her recent research focuses on the nature and impacts of sexual objectification, on sexual orientation, and on sex and gender. Earlier research concerned philosophical questions about fiction, imagination, and pretence. Since 2018 she has been speaking and writing publicly on gender recognition reform and associated matters. She has written on these controversial issues for a variety of publications including The Economist, Quillette, Standpoint, The Conversation, Tortoise, and Unherd. She was awarded an OBE for services to higher education in 2020.
For more information visit Kathleen's profile.
Hannah R Marston is a Research Fellow in the Health and Wellbeing Strategic Research Area. Since completing and graduating from her doctoral studies in 2010 Hannah has worked in Canada and Germany as a post-doctoral fellow and research scientist, respectively.
Hannah is an interdisciplinary researcher, and her interests lie in the fields of videogames, digital (health) technology, technology adoption, gamification, health, wellbeing, digital ex/inclusion, age-friendly cities and communities, ageing, and user experience. Hannah has published over 40 peer-reviewed journal papers, 10 book chapters, led and co-guest edited special issues and has presented her research at both national and international conferences. In 2018, Hannah gave a keynote presentation at the ‘International Child and Information Safety Congress ‘Digital Games’’ conference held in Ankara, Turkey.
Hannah is involved in a wide range of research projects and is currently leading on two Covid-19 related projects:
Samantha Pay is currently an OOC (Open, Oxford, Cambridge) DPhil student and her research is highly engaged with the argument that sex matters in the field of AI/tech/data ethics. My department OII www.oii.ox.ac.uk is multidisciplinary and my own research is seated within social science, data science, philosophy, psychology, and feminism.