Dr Rebecca Barnes

Senior Qualitative Methods Advisor and Researcher

School/Department: Population Health Sciences, Department of

Telephone: +44 (0)116 252 3215



I joined the Department of Population Health Sciences in November 2019, having previously been Lecturer in Criminology at the University of Leicester. I am a social scientist with a background in both Sociology and Criminology. My role at the NIHR Research Support Service (RSS) Hub delivered by the University of Leicester and partners (which replaces the Research Design Service East Midlands) involves advising and collaborating with researchers in support of a broad range of health and social care research funding applications. I have a particular remit and passion for supporting researchers to embed equity, diversity and inclusion (EDI) in their research. I am also a member of the Department of Population Health Sciences' EDI team.


My research expertise lies in the field of domestic violence and abuse, primarily in lesbian gay bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ+) populations and latterly in Christian communities.

From April 2022-September 2023 I also worked part-time at the University of Lincoln as joint lead for the NIHR-funded Lifeguard Pharmacy study which co-developed and tested the feasibility of a community pharmacy intervention for people experiencing domestic abuse and/or suicidal feelings.

I have also led or been involved in studies related to LGBTQ+ people's mental health and healthcare experiences, and LGBTQ+ patients' experiences of uterine cancer care. My previous research has been funded by the NIHR, ESRC, Nottingham Police and Crime Commissioner, NHS Nottingham City Clinical Commissioning Group and various charities.

My methodological expertise and interests span qualitative methods (particularly in-depth interviews, interviews on sensitive topics, and focus groups), survey design and methods, patient and public involvement, and inclusive research, including research with marginalised populations


Barnes, R. and Aune, K. (2021) 'Gender and domestic abuse victimisation among churchgoers in north west England: breaking the church's gendered silence', Journal of Gender-Based Violence, 5(2): 271-288.

Barnes, R., Gunby, C., Johnson, K. and Ayres, T. (2021) Improving the Mental Health Outcomes of Nottingham's LGBT+ Populations: final report. Leicester: University of Leicester.

Donovan C. and Barnes R. (2020) ‘Help-seeking among lesbian gay bisexual and/or transgender victims/survivors of domestic violence and abuse: the impacts of cisgendered heteronormativity and invisibility’, Journal of Sociology, 54(4): 554-570.

Donovan C. and Barnes R. (2020) Queering Narratives of Domestic Violence and Abuse. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.

Donovan C. and Barnes R. (2019) ‘Re-tangling coercive control: a view from the margins and a response to Walby and Towers (2018)’ Criminology and Criminal Justice, 21(2): 242-257.

Donovan C. and Barnes R. (2019) ‘Making sense of discourses of sameness and difference in agency responses to LGB and/or T abusive partners’, Sexualities, 22(5/6): 785-802.

Donovan C. and Barnes R. (2018) ‘Becoming 'ideal' or falling short?: the legitimacy of lesbian gay bisexual and/or transgender victims of domestic violence and hate crime' in Duggan M. (ed.) Revisiting the ‘Ideal Victim’ Concept. Bristol: Policy Press.

Barnes R. and Donovan C. (2018) ‘Domestic violence in lesbian gay bisexual and/or transgender relationships’ in Lombard N. (ed.) Routledge Handbook of Gender and Violence. London: Routledge.

Barnes R. (2013) ‘“I’m over it”: survivor narratives after woman-to-woman partner abuse’ Partner Abuse, 4(3): 380-398

Barnes R. (2011) ‘‘Suffering in a silent vacuum’: woman-to-woman partner abuse as a challenge to the lesbian feminist vision', Feminism & Psychology, 21(2): 233-239

Press and media

Domestic violence in LGBTQ+ people's relationships; domestic violence and the Church


Member of the British Sociological Association


Invited member of the Scientific Committee for the European Domestic Violence Conference in 2017, 2019, 2021 and 2023

Winner (with Dr Clare Gunby) of University of Leicester 2017 Images of Research Competition (College Prize and Overall Staff Prize)


Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA) awarded 2009.

PhD 'Woman-to-Woman Partner Abuse: A Qualitative Analysis'. University of Nottingham 2007.

MA in Research Methods in Sociology University of Nottingham 2003.

BA (Hons) Sociology with Applied Studies University of Derby 2002.

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