New centre to focus on gender, sexuality studies

Monday, 7 December 2009

A new $300,000 research centre focusing on gender issues will be launched tomorrow at the University of Adelaide, nearly 130 years after it made history by admitting women to academic courses.

The Centre for Research on Gender will embrace social topics, health and work issues from the perspective of both sexes, as well as investigating the role that sexuality plays in people's lives.

The centre, to be launched at the Art Gallery of South Australia tomorrow (Tuesday 8 December), will continue a tradition of innovation and progressive thinking at the University of Adelaide.

In 1881 it was the first Australian university to admit women to its courses, just 13 years before South Australia became the first State in the country - and one of the first in the world - to grant women the right to vote.

The University also graduated Australia's first female surgeon, Laura Fowler, and the country's first female Queen's Counsel and State Governor, Dame Roma Mitchell.

University of Adelaide Vice-Chancellor and President Professor James McWha says the Centre for Research on Gender will build on the University's commitment to promote social justice, equality and diversity in its own workplace and the wider community.

"We aim to develop the study of gender relations, drawing particularly on feminist, sexuality and masculinity studies, producing research which is relevant to both men and women," Professor McWha says.

Between 1983 and 2000 the University was home to the highly acclaimed Research Centre for Women's Studies. Professor Susan Magarey was foundation director of this centre and also initiated the internationally renowned Australian Feminist Studies journal.

In 2007 the University of Adelaide also established the Freemasons Foundation Centre for Men's Health, which aims to help men live longer, happier and healthier lives.

South Australia's Minister for the Status of Women the Hon. Gail Gago will be among those attending tomorrow's launch, along with SA Equal Opportunity Commissioner Linda Matthews and Deputy Leader of the Opposition in the Legislative Council, the Hon. Michelle Lensink.


Contact Details

Associate Professor Christine Beasley
Centre for Research on Gender
University of Adelaide
Business: +61 8 8313 5065
Mobile: 0438 892 084

Mr David Ellis
Deputy Director, Media and Corporate Relations
External Relations
The University of Adelaide
Business: +61 8 8313 5414
Mobile: +61 (0)421 612 762