Dr Fiona Bloomer
Lecturer in Social Policy
Dr Fiona Bloomer was appointed as Lecturer at Ulster University in 2010, joining the School of Criminology, Politics and Social Policy. Previous to that she had a career of two decades in senior research posts within the public and non-government sectors in Northern Ireland. Whilst at the Office of the First Minister / Deputy First Minister, Dr Bloomer was sponsored to complete her PhD at Ulster. Her thesis explored the efficacy of community reconciliation projects for identity redefinition in young people in Northern Ireland.
Since 2010 Dr Bloomer has centred her research on gender issues, with a particular focus on abortion including: abortion policy, abortion stigma, faith and abortion. Her research findings have been published in international journals including the Culture Health and Sexuality and Critical Social Policy. She is co-editor of a forthcoming collection of papers exploring access to abortion in Ireland, north and south and Prince Edward Island (Canada). She has secured funding awards from the British Academy, the Open Society Foundation and ACSONI and UNITE.
Dr Bloomer is a founding member of the Reproductive Health Law and Policy Advisory Group, a joint initiative with Queens University, Belfast and Manchester Metropolitan University. The Advisory Group was established in early 2016 to provide expertise and knowledge on policy and legal matters related to reproductive health; to facilitate discussions and knowledge transfer between academics, policy and law makers, health professionals and stakeholder groups; to provide advice on legal and policy reform. She is also a member of RAARN, the Reproductive Activism and Abortion Rights Network, a global network of academics and activists.
In June 2016 She hosted the UKs first international conference on abortion - the Abortion and Reproductive Justice Conference - The Unfinished Revolution II. The conference was attended by leading scholars in the field; scholars from around the world (the USA (Princeton, Yale, Berkeley), Canada, Turkey, India, Australia, Spain, Italy, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Russia, Thailand, Poland, Ireland, UK, and the Philippines) and from disciplines include social policy, criminology, sociology, psychology, history and art. Themes include: abortion stigma, barriers to legal reform, medicalisation, human rights, migration, conscientious objection, activism, abortion narratives, sex-selection abortion, repeat abortion and religion.
Dr Bloomer works closely with a range of stakeholders in the field of abortion policy to enhance understanding of policy, law and human rights issues, these include the FPA, Abortion Support Network, Amnesty International, the Royal College of Midwives, the Open University, Medical Students for Choice, and Alliance for Choice.
She is regularly called on to provide expert opinion on abortion policy by local and national media.
Dr Fiona Bloomer, Institute for Research in Social Sciences, talks about her research into abortion as a health care issue, and how regulations regarding abortion vary across the world.