At this Sex Matters webinar, on 23rd February 2023, our director of advocacy, Helen Joyce, talked with sociologist Michael Biggs and social-science researcher Matilda Gosling about current practice in child gender medicine, and the poor quality of the research it is based on.
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About the speakers
Michael Biggs is an associate professor of sociology at the University of Oxford. He has written on social movements and collective protest in all the leading disciplinary journals. In 2018 he started to scrutinise puberty suppression in paediatric gender medicine. The evidence of shoddy research practices he uncovered has been widely quoted in the media, and published in academic journals and book chapters. He was an expert witness in the groundbreaking judicial review of NHS paediatric gender services taken by Keira Bell.
- ‘The Dutch protocol for juvenile transsexuals: origins and evidence’, September 2022, Journal of Sex and Marital Therapy
- ‘Suicide by clinic-referred transgender adolescents in the United Kingdom’, January 2022, Archives of Sexual Behavior
- ‘Revisiting the effect of GnRH analogue treatment on bone mineral density in young adolescents with gender dysphoria’, April 2021, Journal of Pediatric Endocrinology and Metabolism
- ‘Gender dysphoria and psychological functioning in adolescents treated with GnRHa: Comparing Dutch and English prospective studies’, June 2020, Archives of Sexual Behavior
- ‘A letter to the editor regarding the original article by Costa et al: Psychological support, puberty suppression, and psychosocial functioning in adolescents with gender dysphoria’, November 2019, Journal of Sexual Medicine
- The Tavistock’s experimentation with puberty blockers, March 2019.
Matilda Gosling is a social-science researcher specialising in research on issues affecting children and young people. She has worked for governments, charities, foundations and private sector organisations internationally, and has overseen field research in more than 60 countries. She is in the process of writing two evidence-based parenting books. She has written two papers for Sex Matters, aimed at a non-specialist audience, setting out what is known about teenagers and gender identity, with a third and final instalment forthcoming:
- Teenagers and gender identity: the evidence base. Introduction and Part 1: Why might teenagers question their gender?
- Teenagers and gender identity: the evidence base. Part 2: Treatment and outcomes
Helen Joyce is a journalist and author of Trans: When Ideology Meets Reality, an Amazon top ten bestseller, and Times of London and Spectator book of the year. She was a staff journalist at The Economist between 2005 and 2022, holding several senior positions, including International editor, Finance editor and Britain editor. She is director of advocacy for Sex Matters. Her newsletter can be found at thehelenjoyce.com.
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