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The Future of Sexuality Research: Methodological to Social Policy Innovations

April 9-11, 2007


Keynote Speaker

Martha K. McClintock, Ph.D.

Topic: "Pheromones and Sexual Motivation"

David Lee Shillinglaw Distinguished Professor in Psychology
Director, Institute for Mind and Biology
University of Chicago

Dr. McClintock was the first researcher to discover menstrual synchronization among human females while still an undergraduate at Welleseley College. McClintock made this now famous discovery when she observed that the menstrual cycles among her dormitory mates became synchronized. After researching the topic further for her senior thesis, she concluded that the synchronization of the menstrual cycles among female friends and dormitory mates was caused by pheromones transmitted through social interaction. This research was later published in Nature (McClintock 1971).

Broadly, McClintock's current research focuses on the interaction between behavior and reproductive endocrinology. Because behavior and endocrine function are reciprocally linked, Dr. McClintock focuses on the behavioral control of endocrinology, in addition to the hormonal and neuroendocrine mechanisms of behavior. Working with both animal and parallel clinical processes in humans, Dr. McClintock concentrates on the behavioral and environmental control of fertility and reproductive hormones. In addition, Dr. McClintock is interested in the evolutionary function of hormone-behavior interactions, particularly their role in sexual selection.


Plenary Speakers

Walter O. Bockting, Ph.D.


"Gender Identity and Sexual Risk Behavior: Report from an Internet-based Study of the U.S. Transgender Population"


Coordinator of Transgender Health Services

Program in Human Sexuality Associate Professor

Department of Family Medicine and Community Health

University of Minnesota Medical School



Rafael Diaz, Ph.D


"Sexual Effects of Methamphetamine Use in Latino Gay Men: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly"


Professor of Ethnic Studies
Director, Cesar E. Chavez Institute
San Francisco State University

Dr. Diaz is by training a social worker (M.S.W., New York University 1977) and a developmental psychologist (Ph.D., Yale University 1982). He completed a two-year post-doctoral traineeship in epidemiology, biostatistics, and prevention science at The Center for AIDS Prevention Studies (CAPS), University of California San Francisco (UCSF, 1992-1994). After 13 years as a Professor of Psychology and Education at the University of New Mexico and Stanford University, he joined the faculty at CAPS/UCSF for seven years conducting research on Latino gay men and HIV. Recently he was appointed Professor of Ethnic Studies at San Francisco State University (SFSU), where he has assumed the position of Director of the César Chávez Institute (CCI). Guided by principles of community participatory research, the CCI conducts research programs pertaining to the impact of social oppression on the health, education, and well-being of disenfranchised communities in the US. 


William George, Ph.D.


“Alcohol, Sexual Arousal, & HIV Risk: Experiments on the 'Heat of the Moment'”


Professor of Psychology

Director, Institute for Ethnic Studies in the U.S.

University of Washington


Dr. George's current research focuses on the influence of alcohol on sexual behavior, emphasizing the view that both alcohol expectancy theory and alcohol myopia theory are useful frameworks for understanding post-drinking sexuality. Current laboratory-based experiments examine the potentially disinhibiting effects of alcohol on sexual perception, sexual aggression, and HIV/AIDS related sexual risk taking. Another primary interest of Dr. George's research focuses on how cultural factors and racial stereotypes interact with the above topics. Dr. George's work has also encompassed theories and therapies pertaining to addictions – especially Relapse Prevention applications; sex offenders; couple relationships; and the adult sexuality of survivors of child sexual abuse.



The Reverend Debra W. Haffner


"Research on Sexuality and Religion: What's the Connection?"


The Reverend Debra W. Haffner is the director of the Religious Institute on Sexual Morality, Justice, and Healing. She is an ordained Unitarian Universalist minister. She is the endorsed community minister with the Unitarian Church in Westport, CT.


Rev. Haffner is the author of three guides for congregations on sexuality as well as two award winning books for parents: From Diapers to Dating: A Parent's Guide to Raising Sexually Healthy Children, which was called by Kirkus Review "the very best kind of guide for being a better parent," and Beyond the Big Talk: Every Parent's Guide to Raising Sexually Healthy Teens, which the American Library Association's Booklist says, "offers solid advice and resources to parents, who will greatly appreciate her candor." She is also the co-author of a college sexuality textbook and "What I've Learned About Sex."



Dean Hamer, Ph.D.


"Why We Need More Sex Research"


Senior Scientist

National Institutes of Health

Dr. Hamer has worked at the National Institutes of Health for 24 years, where he is currently the Chief of the Section on Gene Structure and Regulation in the Laboratory of Biochemistry of the National Cancer Institute.

Dr. Hamer's research has led to contributions in a variety of areas including recombinant DNA, drug and vaccine production, and gene regulation.  He was a coinventor of animal cell gene transfer, and recently has begun a program on molecular therapeutics for HIV/AIDS.  For the past nine years, Dr. Hamer has studied the role of inheritance in human behavior, personality traits, and cancer risk-related behaviors such as cigarette smoking. His discovery of genetic links to sexual orientation and the temperamental traits of sensation seeking and anxiety have changed the way we think about human behavior and raise a host of important scientific, social and ethical issues.


Janet Shibley Hyde

"Peer Sexual Harassment Victimization in Adolescence: A Longitudinal Approach"


Professor of Psychology and Women's Studies
University of Wisconsin


Dr. Hyde's research falls in the areas of psychology of women, human sexuality, and gender-role development. One current research project, the Wisconsin Maternity Leave and Health Project (now called the Wisconsin Study of Families and Work), focuses on working mothers and their children; this research has public policy implications in the area of parental leave. Another current project, funded by the National Science Foundation, is the Moms & Math (M&M) Project, in which mothers interacting with their 5th or 7th grade children are studied as they do mathematics homework together. Other research investigates the emergence of gender differences in depression in adolescence, peer sexual harrassment victimization in adolescence, and gender differences in mathematics performance.



Richard Parker, Ph.D


"Sexuality, Health and Human Rights"


Chairman, Department of Sociomedical Sciences

Mailman School of Public Health

Columbia University


Dr. Richard Parker is a medical anthropologist, whose research focuses on the social and cultural construction of gender and sexuality, the social aspects of HIV/AIDS, and the relationship between social inequality, health, and disease. He has conducted long-term research in Brazil since the early 1980s, as well as comparative studies in Asia, Africa, North America, and other parts of Latin America and the Caribbean. In addition to his academic work, Dr. Parker has also served on numerous commissions and held a range of positions in program and advocacy work.




Steve Seidman, Ph.D.


"The Critique of Compulsory Heterosexuality"


Professor of Sociology

SUNY Albany





Antony Stately, Ph.D.


"Two Spirit American Indian Men: Sociocultural & Historical Factors related to HIV Risk"


Project Director, HONOR Project

Native Wellness Research Center

School of Social Work

University of Washington





Deborah Tolman, Ph.D.


"Solidly edgy:  Innovating sexuality research questions and methods" 


Professor of Human Sexuality Studies

Director, Center for Research on Gender & Sexuality

San Francisco State University





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