Gender and Sexualities

Departmental research includes work across the broad spectrum of gender and sexualities topics. It includes research about LGBTQ peoples’ experiences, how services work with LGBTQ people, as well as how the social work profession engages with sexuality. It also explores feminist epistemologies, experiences of men and women, and gender and masculinities theories.

Several academics are active in the University of Birmingham Sexuality and Gender Studies Network 



LOASCA: Lgbtq+ Older Adult Social Care Assessment study
The LOASCA study addresses significant knowledge gaps about Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Queer (LGBTQ+) older (60+ years old) people’s adult social care service experiences in England.

LGBTQ-inclusion in higher education
The overarching goal of the project has been to identify and develop best practice on LGBTQ inclusion in higher education – with a focus on teaching and learning.

Developing an LGBTQ Inclusive Curriculum

Improving LGBTQ+ Young People Experiences of Social Care

International Special Interest Group of Social Work and Sexuality 

Sexual and Gender-Based Violence in the Refugee Crisis: Vulnerabilities, inequalities and responses 
Funded by the Volkswagen Foundation. Principal Investigator: Jenny Phillimore


Professor Harry Ferguson

Professor Harry Ferguson

Professor of Social Work

Department of Social Work and Social Care

Harry joined the university in 2017 as Professor of Social Work. He took up his first lectureship in 1990 and has held professorial posts since 2000. He has taught and researched widely in the areas of social work and child protection, domestic abuse, fatherhood, masculinities and men's lives, mobile research methods, ethnography, and the social science of social work.


Dawn River

Dawn River

Lecturer in Social Work

Department of Social Work and Social Care

Dawn is Lecturer and Erasmus and Study Abroad Lead in the Department of Social Work and Social Care. Dawn is also based within the Institute for Research into Superdiversity (IRiS) as the LGBT*Qi Lead and member of the teaching team on the Community and Practitioner Research Programme.

She is currently working on four research projects: ‘Queer Brexit: the migrant experience’; ...

+44(0)121 414 2936

Dr Jason Schaub

Dr Jason Schaub

Associate Professor in Social Work

Department of Social Work and Social Care

Jason is an Associate Professor in Social Work, and Director of PGR for the School of Social Policy. His teaching and research examine gender and sexuality, leadership in social work, and children and families social work. He is co-chair of the UK regional network for International Partnership for Queer Youth Resilience (INQYR) and previously chair of  Sexuality in Social Work ...

+44 (0)121 414 5732


Schaub, J. (2021) 'Social Work Men as a Feminist Issue', in Christine Cocker and Trish Hafford-Letchfield (eds.) Rethinking Feminist Theories for Social Work Practice. London: Palgrave.

Schaub, J. (2021) 'The Biopolitics and Stigma of the HIV and Covid-19 Pandemics', in Panagiotis Pentaris (ed.) Death, Grief and Loss in the Context of COVID-19. Abingdon: Routledge. Available at:

Henrickson, M., Giwa, S., Hafford-Letchfield, T., Cocker, C., Mulé, N., Schaub, J., and Baril, A. (2020) Research Ethics with Gender and Sexually Diverse Persons. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 17(18), 6615.

Schaub, J. (2019) NHS Long Term Plan does not provide enough for LGBTQ young people. Social Sciences Birmingham. 24 January. Available at:

Schaub, J., Willis, P. and Dunk-West, P. (2017) Accounting for self, sex and sexuality in UK social workers' knowledge base: an exploratory study.  British Journal of Social Work. 47(2), pp: 427-446. 

Schaub, J. (2017) Men and the ‘caring professions’ Issue. Professional Social Work. December, pp: 40. Available at:

Schaub, J. (2017) Does Social Work Need More Men? It’s complicated. Professional Social Work. November, pp: 15

Schaub, J. (2017) ‘Is social work ‘dominated’ by women? It’s Complicated’, Professional Social Work. November, pp:

Schaub, J. (2015) Issues for Men’s Progression on English Honours and Postgraduate Degree Courses in Social Work. Social Work Education: The International Journal. 34 (3), 315-327.  

Fawcett, B. (2011) ‘Postmodernism’ in S. Webb and M. Gray (eds) Social Work Theories and Methods, London/Thousand Oaks, Sage

Fawcett, B.  and Waugh, F. (2008) (eds) Addressing Violence, Abuse and Oppression: Debates and Challenges, Routledge,

Fawcett B. Editor for Special Edition of 'Social Sciences' Edition entitled Feminisms: Forwards, Backwards and Something in Between'

Fawcett, B. Featherstone, B., Fook, J. and Rossiter, A. (2000) (eds) Research and Practice in Social Work: Postmodern Feminist Perspectives, London, Routledge,

Fawcett, B., Featherstone, B., Hearn, J. and Toft, C. (1996) (eds.) Violence and Gender Relations: Theories and Interventions, London,  Sage


Schaub, J. (2021) (invited) Gender Diversity of Social Work Students. Who Cares? Conference. University of Brunel. (14-15 July).

Schaub, J. (2021) (invited) LGBTQ+ Young People and Social Work. British Association of Social Workers virtual webinars. (23 March).

Schaub, J. (2021) (invited) Working with LGBTQ+ Service Users in Social Work. Celebrating LGBTQ+ history month: Social Work Student Connect Webinar 30. (3 February)

Schaub, J. (2021) (invited) Men in Social Work. Social Work Student Connect Webinar 28. (20 January)

Schaub, J. (2018) (invited) Barriers to Men Entering the Health and Social Care Workforce. Holyrood’s Attracting Men into The Caring Professions Conference, Edinburgh, UK (25 September).

Schaub, J. (2018) (invited) How to improve LGBTQ Young People’s Lives? Invited Scholars’ Pre-conference Workshop – International Social Work and Sexuality Conference, Montreal, Canada (8-10 August).

Schaub, J. (2018) (invited) LGBTQ Young People and Migration in the UK. IARS International Conference, London, UK (12-13 July).

Schaub, J. (2021) Does Social Work Want More Men? Joint Social Work Education and Research Conference. University of Cardiff. (8-9 July).

Martin, S., McDermott, D., Schaub, J., Roe, D., Uglik-Murucha, E., Engiux, B., and Rimes, K. (2020) QueerViBE! Supporting Transgender Youth Identity Development. Sexuality in Social Work Conference. Mumbai, India (virtual). (26-27 November).

Schaub, J. and Haworth, S. (2020) Challenges with British LGBTQ+ young people homelessness. Sexuality in Social Work Conference. Mumbai, India (virtual). (26-27 November).

Schaub, J. and Haworth, S. (2019) LGBTQ+ young people and homelessness in the UK. European Social Work Research Association. Leuven, Belgium. (10-12 April).


2018 Montreal

2016 Olten, Switzerland


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