The Gender Recognition & Reform Project

Lead Research Organisation: University of Exeter
Department Name: School of Law


The Gender Recognition Act 2004 (GRA) is currently under review by the government and public consultation is due to close in October 2018. The GRA currently legally recognises transgender men and women on the condition that they medicalise their gender identity by receiving a diagnosis of gender dysphoria in a highly stigmatising process. The GRA confuses gender, sex and sexuality; reproduces the gender binary and gendered expectations; and renders a growing number of gender-queer transgender individuals invisible to law. I plan to expose and reformulate these problematic features of the GRA whilst reflecting on the consultation, and conduct interviews and doctrinal research informed by feminist legal theory and queer legal theory.

The pressing need for this research must not be underestimated as people in the queer community face considerably higher risks of mental illness, substance abuse, and suicide. If we utilise the unique power of the law through amending the GRA in a way that actually caters for these diverse groups, we may find that this decreases social stigma, bullying, hate crimes and discrimination. We need a dialogue between the law and gender, and a fresh and innovative perspective on how to achieve this.


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Studentship Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Student Name
ES/P000630/1 01/10/2017 30/09/2027
2096459 Studentship ES/P000630/1 01/10/2018 30/09/2022 Mollie Gascoigne