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Feature Story: Meredith Chivers November 2019

Dr. Meredith Chivers receives honours from the Society of Scientific Study of Sexuality

November 14, 2019
By Queen’s Psychology

At the November 8th meeting of the Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality (SSSS) in Denver, Colorado, Dr. Meredith Chivers was appointed as a Fellow of the Society, a special honour given to two individuals each year.  Fellows are elected based on evidence of outstanding contributions to the science of sexuality, on demonstrated excellence in mentorship, and for service to the organization. Election is by the Board of Directors, upon recommendation from the Awards and Fellows Committee, based on nominations made by peers. Dr. Chivers was nominated for her exemplary research and mentorship in sexual science. Other Fellows include sex research pioneers and leaders such as William Masters, Albert Ellis, and Janet Hyde.

In her acceptance speech, Dr. Chivers spoke of the challenges of doing sexuality science and the crucial support that organizations like SSSS offer: “Many of us have faced numerous barriers in doing this work – institutional and funding barriers, political barriers, inequities based in gender, sexuality, race, and socioeconomic status, to name just a few. For many of us, our work comes from a place of passion, a place of struggle, a deep commitment to making sexuality matter, from wanting to help others actualize their sexualities and reap the benefits of sexual well-being. Your passion and energy and commitment are humbling and inspiring. I am honoured to be a Fellow of the supportive SSSS community, to work together to challenge, to disrupt, and to make sexuality matter.”

At the Denver SSSS meeting, Dr. Chivers also received the Ira and Harriet Reiss Theory award and gave an invited talk on her winning article. The Reiss Award is intended to highlight and support theoretical advances in social science theory concerning human sexuality. Dr. Chivers’ article, “The specificity of women’s sexual response and its relationship with sexual orientations: A review and ten hypotheses”, published in the Archives of Sexual Behavior in 2017, was an invited review paper integrating research findings across psychology subdisciplines examining the specificity of women’s sexual response, a now burgeoning line of research that was founded by Chivers’ ground-breaking graduate work at Northwestern University. Seven colleagues were invited to comment on this paper, and she responded to these comments and critiques. In 2018, this article was also awarded the Richard Green Founding Editor Essay Award from the International Academy of Sex Research.

Congratulations Meredith!