Ms Kriss Fearon

Job: PhD student

Faculty: Health and Life Sciences

School/department: School of Applied Social Sciences

Research group(s): Centre for Reproduction Research

Address: De Montfort University, The Gateway, Leicester, LE1 9BH.

T: N/A




Personal profile

Kriss has a longstanding interest and experience in assisted conception, initially with egg and sperm donors, and subsequently on the impact of social research into reproductive technology on policy.  She was a trustee of the National Gamete Donation Trust for eight years, bringing her into regular contact with patients, donors, counsellors, clinicians, donor recruitment agency staff, and HFEA and DoH members, gaining a rounded picture of the UK fertility field.

Her PhD research explores the social, psychological, legal and ethical issues attached to reproductive decision-making, parenthood and the use of assisted conception amongst women with Turner Syndrome.

The degree of intervention required, the age at which it needs to be done, the health risks of pregnancy, and the potential use of gametes or ovarian tissue from family members, introduce a significant degree of complexity into the reproductive decision making process for girls and women with TS, their partners and parents. This qualitative study uses narrative methods to focus on the way women with TS describe and explain how they perceive and evaluate the potential of different reproductive choices, particularly with regard to the risks to the child and to themselves. It also looks at the way parents make reproductive choices on behalf of their daughter with TS, and the impact of new technology on those choices.

Research group affiliations

Publications and outputs 

Key research outputs

  • Fearon, K., 2019. ‘Have you ever talked to any women with Turner syndrome?’ Using universal design and photo elicitation interviews in research with women with mild cognitive impairment. Methodological Innovations, 12(2), p.2059799119841933.

Research interests/expertise

  • Reproductive choices for women and girls with Turner’s Syndrome, their parents and partners
  • Egg, ovary and ovarian tissue freezing for medical reasons
  • Mother-to-daughter egg donation
  • Reproductive decision - making
  • Perception of risk in pregnancy following fertility treatment

Areas of teaching

  • Egg/sperm donation and gender
  • Accessible research methods
  • Teaching assistant on University of Leicester School of Management MN33 Equality and Diversity


  • BA (Hons) Greek Studies and Philosophy, Keele University
  • MPhil Publishing Studies, University of Stirling
  • MA Social Research, University of Leeds

Honours and awards

  • Poster prize winner, RC33 9th International Conference on Social Science
  • PhD Studentship, De Montfort University, 2015-18

Membership of professional associations and societies

  • European Association for the Study of Science and TechnologySocial Research Association
  • Social Research Association
  • Advisory Group member, Egg donation in the UK, Belgium and Spain: an interdisciplinary study (EDNA)
  • Member, British Sociology Association
  • Trustee, National Gamete Donation Trust, 2004-2012

Conference attendance

Invited attendee at symposium ‘The Ethics and Regulation of Reproductive Donation’, September 2019, which reported on a joint project between KCL and Lancaster University entitled ‘The Donation and Transfer of Human Reproductive Materials’

Fearon, K (2018) “You are not ready to be a mum if you are not listening to a medical professional say it is not safe”: how ‘reproductive responsibility’ affects family-building choices in women with Turner Syndrome’, paper presented to the European Association for the Study of Science and Technology (EASST)  Annual Conference, Lancaster, 25-28 July 2018.

Fearon, K (2018) ‘Have you ever talked to a woman with Turner Syndrome?’ Photo-elicitation interviews and other adaptions in research with women with mild cognitive impairment’, invited speaker at conference ‘Creating diverse coalitions for equality in neoliberal times: locating the emancipatory city’, DMU, 4 July 2018.

Fearon, K (2018) ‘Have you ever talked to a woman with Turner Syndrome?’ A rationale for the use of photo-elicitation interviews in research on reproductive decision making with women with mild cognitive impairment’. ‘Visualising Reproduction’ Conference, DMU, 4 June 2018.

Fearon, K (2017) 'Using photo elicitation as an accommodation in research with women with Turner Syndrome', poster presented to the Society for Reproductive and Infant Psychology Annual Conference, York, 12-13 September 2017.

Fearon, K (2017) ‘Turner Syndrome and reproductive decision making’, presentation given to the Turner Syndrome Support Society Annual Conference, 7 October 2017.

Radio Fox (Leicester Hospitals Radio), Interview with Jean Carroll on her show The Library Hour, 24 September 2017

'Using photo elicitation as an accommodation in research with women with Turner Syndrome', poster presentation at the Society for Reproductive and Infant Psychology Annual Conference, York, 12-13 September 2017.

Externally funded research grants information

  • Parkes Foundation Small Grant, £800, June 2017, to support fieldwork for her PhD ‘Reproductive decision-making amongst women with Turner Syndrome’

Academic Visits

Invited visitor to the Centre for Childhood Research at the University of Warsaw, March 2019; presented research to date to researchers and gave a talk (jointly with Tracey Connolly, the Chair of Ragdolls UK, who presented via Skype) to Polish families affected by TS.

Visiting student for one week at PEALS, University of Newcastle. Presented: ‘“At least it would have my genes”: how views on kinship affect attitudes to maternal egg freezing in women with Turner Syndrome (TS)’

Event Organisation

Co-organiser, ECR conference Creating diverse coalitions for equality in neoliberal times: the emancipatory city, July 2018, jointly funded by the BSA and the Centre for Urban Research on Austerity, DMU. 

Co-organiser, BSA-funded Postgraduate Conference Public sociology and the role of the researcher: engagement, communication and academic activism, March 2017.

Kriss Fearon

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