Genders, Sexualities and Families

The ISS21 Genders, Sexualities and Families (GSF) cluster provides a dynamic interdisciplinary forum for scholars and students researching in the fields of gender, sexuality and family. The cluster is grounded in social scientific approaches and aims to generate new questions, foster collaborations and strengthen and consolidate existing research connections in GSF. It is an evolving and inclusive network that values diversity and debate, and seeks to engage in critical scholarship and shape public discourse and practice. It has an eclectic and exciting membership drawn from a wide range of disciplines, including; Applied Psychology, Applied Social Studies, Women’s Studies, Sociology, Philosophy, Law, Criminology, Government & Politics, Study of Religions, Medicine, Nursing and Midwifery, Occupational Sciences & Therapies, and Paediatrics and Child Health.

The cluster organizes a bimonthly reading/journal club and occasional seminars, masterclasses and conferences. The GSF cluster also welcomes visiting scholars and lecturers who want to work in an inclusive, collegial and stimulating environment.

Aims and Objectives

  • To stimulate and support academic inquiry related to genders, sexualities and families and informed by the social sciences
  • To promote and develop a dynamic research environment conducive to innovative interdisciplinary research using a diversity of methodologies.
  • To create intellectually critical, creative and collaborative spaces where members can imagine new blue skies ideas, understandings, policies and professional practices relating to families, genders and sexualities.
  • To influence academic debates, professional practice and policy-making locally, nationally and international.
  • To share research findings with relevant stakeholders and communities including activists, advocates, gender, sexuality and family organisations, and relevant state agencies, civil society groups and professional bodies.
  • To build productive research, policy and practice partnerships at local community, national and international levels.

Previous projects of the ISS21 GSF Research Cluster:

GENOVATE: transforming organisational culture for gender equality in research and innovation

A European consortium project funded by FP7 (2013-2017)

Changing Families in Ireland - the social, legal and political context 

A symposium to explore issues relating to Ireland's 2015 Children and Family Relationships Bill and the 2015 marriage equality referendum

Through the Glass Ceiling

Project Team: Caitriona Ni Laoire, Geraldine Boylan, Linda Connolly, Carol Linehan, Aifric O Grada

ESF Workshop on Assisted Reproduction and Changing European Family Structures

Principal Investigators: Dr. Deirdre Madden (Law), Dr. Maire Leane (Applied Social Studies), Dr. Linda Connolly (Sociology)

Gender Equality, Religious Diversity and Multiculturalism in Contemporary Ireland

Principal Investigator: Dr. Siobhan Mullally, Faculty of Law; Funded by Irish Research Council for Humanities and Social Sciences.

Migration and Networks of Care in Europe

A European collaborative project funded by the European Science Foundation and coordinated by Dr. Linda Connolly with Dr. Siobhan Mullally and Dr. Caitriona Ni Laoire (ISS21).

Workshop on Assisted Reproduction and Changing Family Structures

In April 2011, ISS21 played host to a European Science Foundation Exploratory Workshop on Assisted Reproduction and Changing European Family Structures.  The workshop was convened by Dr. Deirdre Madden (Faculty of Law), Dr. Linda Connolly (School of Sociology & Philosophy) and Dr. Máire Leane (School of Applied Social Studies) and was an initiative of ISS21.

The workshop explored the social, ethical and legal consequences of scientific developments in the arena of assisted reproductive technologies and examined and compared how these developments relate to the broader changes occurring in family structures and intimate relationships in European societies. The 17 participants were drawn from a range of European countries including Scotland, Greece, France, Italy, Spain, the Netherlands, England and Ireland and the workshop facilitated interdisciplinary dialogue on how the changing nature of family life intersects with social, legal and ethical debates about Artificial Reproductive Technology.



Cluster Memebers

For a list of cluster members, please click Cluster Members 

Institute for Social Science in the 21st Century (ISS21)

Top Floor, Carrigbawn/Safari Building, Donovan Road, Cork, T12 YE30