Professor Lorraine Culley

Job: Emeritus Professor of Social Science and Health

Faculty: Health and Life Sciences

School/department: School of Applied Social Sciences

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

T: +44 (0)116 257 7753




Personal profile

Lorraine Culley is a sociologist by background and a graduate of the Universities of Liverpool (BA, PhD) and London (MA). Her research is focused on social and political aspects of health and healthcare, with a particular emphasis on ethnic and gender inequalities, chronic conditions, social aspects of infertility, reproductive technologies and endometriosis.

Lorraine has particular expertise in qualitative methodologies and in research which explores user perspectives of health and healthcare.

She has held grants from several major funders, including the NIHR and the ESRC. Her work includes over 80 publications and has featured in programmes on BBC World TV, BBC Radio 4, 5 Live, and Asian Network. 

Lorraine has taught courses on sociological aspects of diversity and the sociology of health and illness on a wide range of programmes at DMU and has been a course leader at undergraduate and postgraduate levels. Her academic management experience includes several years as head of the Health Studies Division and she has held a number of faculty and university level appointments.

Lorraine is on the editorial board of the Journal of Research in Nursing.  She is a member of the Children’s Health Forum of the South Asian Health Foundation.

Publications and outputs 


Click here for a full listing of Lorraine Culley's publications and outputs.

Research interests/expertise

  • Social aspects of infertility and reproductive technologies.
  • Diversity, health and healthcare (gender and ethnicity).
  • Endometriosis.
  • User perspectives on health/care.
  • Chronic Illness.
  • Qualitative research methods.
  • Children’s health.


  • BA (Hons) Social Studies University of Liverpool
  • MA (Area Studies) University of London
  • PhD Sociology University of Liverpool

Conference attendance

  • Culley, L (2012) Exploring the experiences of UK fertility travellers.  Invited presentation at the European Medical Tourism Conference, Berlin 26 - 29 April.
  • Culley, L (2012) The UK experience of cross border reproduction care.  Invited talk at the Royal College of Surgeons, Dublin 28 January.
  • Culley, L (2011) Researching ‘Fertility Tourism’: Contesting Media Myths. Invited plenary at 7th Annual Research Conference, Birmingham City University, December. Also published as video on the web.
  • Culley, L (2011) Cross Border Reproductive Care. Invited plenary. Insights Conference, Glasgow, 5-7 October.
  • Culley, L (2011) Women and Medical Tourism: travelling abroad for fertility treatment. Invited presentation at Royal College of Nursing Women’s Health Forum Conference, London, 4 November.
  • Culley, L (2011) The rise of cross-border reproductive care. Invited presentation at Reproductive Medicine, 15 September.
  • Culley, L (2011) Reproductive Tourism: global, local and personal landscapes. Invited presentation at international symposium on Social Aspects of Reproduction, Plymouth, 1 May.
  • Hudson, N, Culley, L, Norton, W (2011) Online communities of hope. Bio-sociality and the negotiation of overseas fertility treatment. Paper presented at British Sociological Association Human Reproduction Study Group Annual Conference, Milton Keynes, 15 June.
  • Culley, L (2011) Home and Away: UK residents who travel abroad for fertility treatment. Northern Nurses Conference, Leeds, UK. 17 June.
  • Culley, L (2011) Making Babies Beyond Borders: ESRC funded research on reproductive tourism. All Wales Nursing and Midwifery Forum. Cardiff,18 March.
  • Culley, L Plenary Speaker: Making Babies Beyond Borders: assisted conception in the age of globalisation. Fertility 2011, the 7th biennial conference of the UK Fertility Societies: the Association of Clinical Embryologists, the British Fertility Society and the Society for Reproduction and Fertility, the
    Irish Clinical Embryologists Association and the Irish Fertility Socety. Dublin Convention Centre, 5-7 January.

Consultancy work

Consultancy can be provided in the following areas:

  • Social aspects of infertility and assisted conception
  • Cross border reproductive care
  • Involving users in research
  • Qualitative methods in health research
  • Working with minority ethnic communities

Externally funded research grants information

  • Endometriosis: Improving the well-being of couples (Endopart) Culley (PI), Mitchell, Hudson, Denny, Raine-Fenning (University of Nottingham). ESRC ES/J003662/1. 2012-13. See
  • Embedding structured self management education programmes for Type 2 diabetes in a multi-ethnic primary care setting. NIHR Programme Development Grant. Davies (PI), Brennan, Baker, Carey, Culley, Daly, Elster, Gray Johnson, Khunti, Mather, Patel, Speight, Sturt. 2012-13.
  • Research in Children’s Health. Culley, Lakhanpaul, Hudson. University of Leicester/University College London 2011-2012.
  • Transnational Reproduction an exploratory study of UK residents who travel abroad for fertility treatment (Transrep):. Culley (PI), Hudson, Pacey, Blyth, Norton, ESRC RES 000-22-3390. 2009-2011. Collaboration with Universities of Sheffield, Swansea, Huddersfield. See
  • Endometriosis and Cultural Diversity (Endocul): improving services for minority ethnic women. Denny, Culley, Papadopoulos, Mann. Department of Health, Research for Patient Benefit Programme. 2007-10. Collaboration with Birmingham City and Middlesex Universities, Birmingham Women’s Hospital.
  • Educational experiences of young people with sickle cell disease. ESRC RES 000-23-1486. Dyson (PI), Culley, Atkin, Demaine. 2006-2011. Collaboration with Universities of York and Loughborough.
  • Contextualising patient-centre professionalism in nursing practice: consulting with patients, professionals and stakeholders. Rapport, Doel, Culley, Mooney, Jones, Evans, Maggs, Hutchings. GNC Trust. CI 2009-2010 Collaboration with University of Swansea.
  • Management and Interventions for Asthma in South Asian Children. NIHR Health Services Research 2009-2012 Lakhanpaul, Culley, Johnson, McFeeters, Robertson, Bird. Wilson. Collaboration with University of Leicester and Leicester City PCT.
  • Asthma and South Asian Children; Systematic Review. Asthma UK 2010-2011. Lakhanpaul, Culley, Johnson, McFeeters, Robertson, Bird. Collaboration with University of Leicester and Leicester City PCT.
  • Department of Health, Pacesetters Programme. Evaluation for the East Midlands Region. Johnson, Culley, Fleming 2008-2009. Collaboration with Leicester PCT and Department of Health.
  • Public Perceptions of Gamete Donation in British South Asian Communities (GAMDON). ESRC. 20005-6. Lorraine Culley (PI), Johnson, Rapport, Bharadwaj. RES-160-25-0044. (please link title to

Professional esteem indicators

  • Editorial Board Reproductive Biomedicine and Society
  • Editorial Board, Journal of Research in Nursing
  • ESRC Peer Review College
  • ESRC Rapporteur End of Award Reports
  • Reviewer of bids for a wide range of organisations including national charities (eg Wellcome Trust, Diabetes UK, Cancer UK ); Research Councils (ESRC, MRC) and the National Institute for Health Research – Health Services Research, Service Delivery and Organisation and Research for Patient Benefit ProgrammesAssessor for external Professorial and Readership appointments
  • Reviewer for international journals including:
  1. Social Science and Medicine
  2. British Medical Journal
  3. Journal of Advanced Nursing
  4. Ethnicity and Health
  5. Qualitative Health Research
  6. Journal of Research in Nursing
  7. Human Fertility
  8. Human Reproduction
  9. Reproductive Health Matters
  10. Journal of Medical Humanities
  11. Journal of Reproductive and Infant Psychology
  12. Diversity in Health and Care.
Lorraine Culley

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