To the Vice-Chancellor, Leeds Beckett University:
It is with dismay and concern that we have learnt that it is planned to close the Centre for Men’s Health at Leeds Beckett University in August 2017. This is a huge setback not only for gender studies and critical research on men and masculinities, but for medical, sociological and psychological research as a whole. The Centre has a very high reputation on the European level and beyond.
We have collaborated in very fruitful ways with researchers in the Centre on the issues of men's health and its connections to gender equality, violence prevention, and the enhancement of well‐being for all genders. The Centre's fantastic work on the Report “The State of Men's Health in Europe” was ground‐breaking: for the first time, data on men’s health in all European countries were analysed in a comprehensive and comparative way. Its results show the high costs that some forms of masculinity, men’s lifestyles and the lack of care bring to men themselves.
We gather that the reason for the closure is that the University seeks to restructure on economic grounds. Thus, the benefits of work of the Centre for Men’s Health, and indeed its overall social and economic value seem to be underrated. Indeed, even seen narrowly in these terms, its important work brings economic and cost savings for the wider society, the city, region and community, public services, businesses and civil society well beyond the University.
There are many good reasons to keep and develop the Centre for Men’s Health: Men’s health issues are about to become not only more recognized, but also more relevant. They are not only related to health itself, but to gender and gender (in)equality in society (also because of the impact of men's poor health on women and children), to social innovation and to social development. Moreover, research has revealed a need for cross‐disciplinary cooperation on methodological development, for example in terms of improved health variables in other research, and vice versa, in terms of improving health variables and indexes from gender and gender equality studies.
The Centre has proved to be an excellent partner in all these discussion and areas of research. We hope that there will be ways to continue its work. We ask the representatives of Leeds Beckett University to revise their decision and help to sustain the work of the Centre for Men’s Health!
Professor Eric Anderson, Professor of Masculinities, University of Winchester; Tasmin Akhtar, Health Trainer, Health & Wellbeing, Walsall; Holisoa Andriambolanoro, Social Prescriber, Space 2, Leeds; Chris Athanasiadis, Lecturer, University of Central Lancashire; Peter Baker, M.A., Director, Global Action on Men’s Health, UK; Ian Banks, European Men’s Health Forum, Brussels; OMR Prof. Dr. Doris Bardehle, Stiftung Männergesundheit, Berlin, Germany; Dr. Gary Barker, President and CEO, Promundo-US Washington DC.; Paul Barker, Young People's Mental Health Project Manager, Space 2; John Barry, Research Director, Male Psychology Section; Professor David Baxter, University of Otago, New Zealand.; Jonathan Bedloe, Australian Men’s Health Forum; Dan Bell, Features Editor, insideMAN; Mag.a Nadja Bergmann, Vienna.; Chris Booth, CHAPS; Mark Brooks, Chair of Trustees, The ManKind Initiative charity; Dr Sally Brown, Lecturer, Edinburgh Napier University; David Bryant, Health Visitor, Leeds Community Health Care Trust; Ann-Marie Bunyan, Research Assistant and Registered Nutritionist, Leeds Beckett University; David Charnock, Assistant Professor, University of Nottingham; Hannah Coe; Emily Cornish, MPH, Project Director, Center for Research on Men’s Health, Vanderbilt University, USA; Lynn Crosland; Donna Cutting, Community Growing coordinator; Damian Dawtry, Men's Engagement Worker, Orion Partnership, Leeds; Martin Dinges, Professor, Institute for the History of Medicine of the Robert; dation, Stuttgart, Germany; Dr Alan Dolan, Associate Professor, University of Warwick; Dr Carol Emslie, Reader, Glasgow Caledonian University; Barry Ewart, Community Education Development Officer/Secretary Leeds Men's Health & Wellbeing Network, Leeds; K Fearon, PhD Student, Centre for Reproduction Research, De Montfort University; Anna Feintuck, Teaching Fellow, University of Edinburgh; Grania Fenton, Researcher and Senior Programme Manager; Mandy Ferncombe, Health Improvement Practitioner, East Dunbartonshire HSCP; Esther Foster; Dawn Fuller, Joint Chief Executive, Space 2, Leeds; Dr. Marc Gärtner, Berlin & Graz.; Joseph Gelfer, Director, Masculinity Research; Grant Gibson, Lecturer, University of Sterling; Helen Gibson; Paul Gillen, Health Promotion Officer, Galway, Ireland; Professor Marek Glezerman, President, The International Society for Gender Medicine, Israel; Emma Goodway, Space 2, Leeds; Angela Goodyear, Health Programmes Manager, Feel Good Factor; Gayle Graham, Community Development Worker, Health for All (Leeds); Dr Derek Griffith, Center for Research on Men’s Health, Vanderbilt University, USA; Professor emeritus Jeff Hearn, Ph.D., Helsinki.; Hedda Hakvåg, Senior advisor, Reform- Resource Centre for Men; Dr Joel Heidelbaugh, University Michigan, USA; Professor Dr. Philos. Øystein Gullvåg Holter, Oslo.; Michael Holzer; Robert Houlgate, HIV support service manager, BHA Leeds Skyline; Prof. Dr. Stephan Höyng, Professor for Boys and Mens Work, Katholische Hochschule für Sozialwesen Berlin; Dr. Majda Hrzeniak, Ljubljana.; Professor Kate Hunt, Associate Director, MRC/CSO Social and Public Health Sciences Unit, Glasgow University; Alexander Haydn, Männerberatung Vienna, Austria; Kath Ingram, Health Improvement Project Lead, Livewell Southwest; Mike Jestico, PhD research student in men's health and wellbeing, University of Leeds; Dr Michael Kimmel, New York.; Dr Ineke Klinge, Chair H2020 Advisory Group on Gender; Karina Kinsella, Research Assistant, Leeds Beckett University; Prof. em. Ilse Lenz, Ruhr-University Bochum, Frankfurt University, Germany; Professor Maria Lohan, Queens University Belfast; Jacqui Lovell, Community Psychologist, Leeds Beckett University; Professor John Macdonald, Australian Men’s Health, Western Sydney University; Peggy Maguire, Director General, European Institute Women’s Health, Ireland; Dr Wolfgang Markham, Associate Professor, Warwick Medical School, University of Warwick; Bidovec Marialla; Dr Andrew Marsh, Associate Professor, University of Warwick; Mike Matthews, Founder, The Inspiring Men Project; Dr Matthew Maycock, Falkirk Scotland; Kevin McEleny, Consultant Urologist, Newcastle Fertility Centre; John McLuskey, Associate Professor, The University of Nottingham; Solome Mealin,; Greg Millan, Men’s Health Consultant, Australia,; Gillian Mooney, Doctoral researcher, School of sociology and social policy - university of Leeds; Dr. Paco Abril Morales, Girona.; Errol Murray, Founder, Leeds Dads, Leeds; Heather Nelson JP Chief Executive Officer, Black Health Initiative (BHI), Leeds; Professor Chirk Jenn Ng, University of Malay, Malaysia; Ole Bredesen Nordfjell, Senior advisor, Department/Organisation: Reform - Resource Centre for Men, Norway; Amanda Janet Norman, Programme Assistant, Brain Injury HTC, Cambridge University; Dr Rosaleen O'Brien, Glasgow Caledonian University; Shane O’Donnell, Postgraduate Research Student, National Centre for men’s Health, I.T. Carlow, Ireland; John O'Dwyer, Manager, Caring Together in Woodhouse and Little London; Alan O’Neill CEO MDN The Men's Development Network; Michele Presacane, Physical Activity Specialist, NHS England and Aberystwyth University; Rebecca Price, Practice Development Lead, CHCP Hull; Dr. Ralf Puchert, Berlin.; Dr. Mahesh Puri, Kathmandu, Nepal; Prof. Dr. med. Dr. h.c. Vera Regitz-Zagrosek, Director, Institute of Gender in Medicine (GiM), Berlin; Susan Rooke, Leeds Beckett University; Sarah Rushforth, Research Assistant, Leeds Beckett University; Dr. Christian Scambor, Graz.; Mag.a Elli Scambor, Graz.; Mag.a Birgit Schoergi; Klaus Schwerma, Berlin; Professor emeritus Victor Jeleniewski Seidler, Ph.D., London; Dr Ridwan Shabsigh, MD, FACS, President, International Society of Men’s Health, New York, USA; Tim Shand, Deputy Director, Passages Project, Georgetown University, USA; Thom Shaw, Researcher, Leeds Beckett University; Louise Sherratt,; Gillian Shorter, Research Fellow, Teesside University; Terry Simpson, Retired Mental Health Advocate; PhDr. Iva Šmídová, Ph.D, Brno.; Dr Kris Southby, Research Officer, Leeds Beckett University; Chin Hai Teo, University of Malay, Malaysia; Thomas Thurnell-Read, Lecturer in Sociology, Loughborough University; Martin Tod, CEO, Men’s Health Forum, London; Emma Tregidden, Creative Director, Space2, Leeds; Dr Joanne Trigwell, Research Fellow, Leeds Beckett University; Jörg Turba, DSA, Männerberatung Caritas NÖ Austria; Paul Villanti, Executive Director Programs, Movember Foundation, Australia; Grant Westthorp, CEO, Men’s Resource Centre, Australia; Dr Sue Whitcombe, Principal Psychologist, Family Psychology Solutions CIC; Karen Wild, Lecturer in Nursing, Keele University; Stefanie Williams