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Throughout February, we have been sharing resources via our social media channels that highlight the geographies of LGBTQ+ groups, and help to increase their visibility and better understand their history and experiences. Here's a round-up of what we've shared.

ILGA World map showing sexual orientation laws in the world (December 2020).
© Courtesy of ILGA World.

This map is supported by the data collected in State-Sponsored Homophobia 2020: Global Legislation Overview Update (published in December 2020). Courtesy of ILGA World.

Geographers are conducting a wide range of research to better understand the everyday experiences of people in the LGBTQ+ community. Professor Kath Browne, University College Dublin (formerly University of Brighton), has led a number of participatory projects working with community groups with the aim of improving the lives of lesbian, gay and bisexual communities in Brighton, and to understand ‘liveability’ in LGBTQ+ lives and address issues of marginalisation for those communities in the UK and India.

Among the posts on our Geography Directions blog is research by Aydan Greatrick, University College London, and Dr Martin Zebracki, University of Leeds, who have explored the challenges that LGBTQ+ researchers face in the field and how these challenges are often omitted from mainstream discussions around fieldwork. Alongside this is a post on the voices of LGBTQ+ communities about their vulnerabilities to disasters, including exclusion and discrimination on top of personal and financial losses, based on research by Professor Dale Dominey-Howes, University of Sydney. Other recent posts have highlighted the impact the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting lockdowns are having on LGBTQ+ communities, drawing attention to the inequalities faced by people with diverse sexual orientations and gender identities.

We caught up with the recipient of the Space, Sexualities and Queer Research Group 2020 dissertation prize, Katy Simms of Durham University, to discuss her dissertation, No-one wants to meet the love of their life on Tinder, which looks at the effects of mobile dating apps on love, intimacy and identity negotiations for bisexual individuals. In the interview Katy shares more about her research, the inspiration behind it, and why it is important for researchers to look at bisexuality.

Throughout the month, we have also shared a range of blog posts, interviews and other resources (see map above) from across the geographical community discussing personal experiences of working in the sciences as an LGBTQ+ researcher. These include geographer and atmospheric scientist Dr Craig Poku from the University of Leeds, and Lecturer in Disaster Management at the University of Manchester, Dr Billy Tusker Haworth.