School of Social and Political Science

Gender Politics Research Group


The Gender Politics Research Group and teaching cluster (GenderPol) brings together academic staff and postgraduate researchers across Politics and International Relations, the School of Social and Political Science, and beyond, all of whom incorporate gender, feminist and/or intersectional analyses in their work. Members play a leading role in genderED - the University’s interdisciplinary hub for gender and sexualities studies, and are committed to integrating gender into the disciplines of politics and international relations and contributing to decolonising efforts.

Our work is internationally recognised, as evidenced by research grants (current awards include AHRC and the Swedish Ministry of Foreign Affairs); editorial affiliations with publishers such as Oxford University Press and journals, including the British Journal of Politics and IR, Politics & Gender, European Journal of Politics and Gender; Representation; Politics, Groups and Identities; Political Behaviour and Political Studies Review;  our work with organisations - international and domestic, governance and campaigning - such as Women’s International League of Peace and Freedom, UN Women, NATO and the British Armed Services, The British Council, Women 5050, Engender, the Scottish Government and Parliament; and our leadership roles with professional associations such as the Political Studies Association, the Midwest Political Science Association and the Western Political Science Association. Members have received national and international prizes, including for research, teaching and career achievement. We host a number of external research networks including the Feminism and Institutionalism International Network (FIIN) and the Scotland Feminist Politics and International Relations Network.


Key Research Themes:

  • Conflict, peacebuilding and security
  • Gender and political parties, recruitment and representation 
  • Feminist Institutionalism
  • Feminist political economy
  • Feminist political theory
  • International organisations  
  • Institutions/institutional change
  • Public opinion
  • Political leadership
  • British and territorial politics
  • Comparative politics of migration
  • Equality, Diversity and Intersectionality
  • Media studies
  • Women’s movements
  • Gender based violence 


Research Group Convenor(s):

Sarah Liu (Semester 1)

Meryl Kenny (Semester 2)

Rebecca Hewer (Gender Reading Group Co-ordinator)


Research Group Activities:

GenderPol runs the long-standing Gender Reading Group (established 2004) which brings together feminist and gender researchers in SPS and beyond to evaluate key feminist and gender texts; present works-in-progress; and discuss learning and teaching issues. It runs fortnightly during semester time. 

GenderPol also co-hosts events with genderED, and other research groups in Politics and International Relations and beyond, as well organising workshops and seminars, book launches and talks, and mentoring researchers across career stages including through networking, peer mentoring and career development events.

The group tweets as @genderpol and regularly posts on its blog Gender Politics at Edinburgh.


Research-led Teaching: 

GenderPol members lead the delivery and development of the award-winning Understanding Gender in the Contemporary World course, an introductory level module open to all 1st and 2nd year undergraduates from across the University, in addition to specialist honours and masters options. Members won the UK Political Studies Association Innovation in Teaching Politics (Group) Award 2018 (Duncanson, Kenny, Mackay) for their collaborative work on teaching gender politics over a decade; and the Bernard Crick Prize for Outstanding Teaching in 2021 (Liu). 

Please find below a list of courses that our representative of the Gender Politics Research Group's work;

  • Understanding Gender in the Contemporary World, SSPS08012 (UG)
  • Gender Peace and Security, PLIT10130 (UG)
  • Gender, Power and Representation, PLIT10113 (UG- not running in 2021/22)
  • Gender, Politics and Representation, PGSP11542 (PG)
  • Gender and Sexuality in Global Politics, PGSP11440 (PG- not running in 2021/22)
  • Gender, War and Peacebuilding, PGSP11526 (PG- not running in 2021/22)


Research Group Members:

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