Dr Matson Lawrence

Senior Equality & Diversity Officer

Access, Equality and Inclusion

Personal statement

Matson is a Research Associate with the NORFACE-funded CILIA-LGBTQI+ study, based at the School of Education, examining intersectional lifecourse (in)equalities among LGBTQI+ people in four European countries.

    Prior to this role, he most recently worked on the TransEdu Scotland research and wider TransEDU project based at the University Strathclyde. Funded by the Scottish Funding Council, the research examined the experiences of, and current provision for, trans and non-binary applicants, students and staff in colleges and universities across Scotland. In 2018, the project was awarded a Guardian University Award, a Herald Scotland & GenAnalytics Diversity Award, and a Strathclyde Medal Team Award.

    In 2018, Matson was seconded to the Scottish Funding Council as a Senior Policy / Analysis Officer, with responsibility for overseeing implementation of the Gender Action Plan in colleges and universities across Scotland.

    Matson's co-authored book – Supporting Trans and Non-Binary Students and Staff in Further and Higher Education: Practical advice for colleges and universities – was published by Jessica Kingley Publishers in January 2019. Matson has also led Creative Scotland-funded research on young disabled and D/deaf people’s access to arts provision with Birds of Paradise Theatre Company. He has worked extensively with intersectional LGBTQI+ communities in the third and arts sectors, through roles at LGBT Health and Wellbeing and CCC! Intersectional Arts.

    Matson holds an interdisciplinary Doctorate in Law and Applied Social Sciences from Durham University examining young adults’ perspectives on pornography and its legal regulation, and has been a Research Assistant on several gender-based violence projects.


CILIA-LGBTQI+ Comparing Intersectional Lifecourse Inequalities among LGBTQI+ Citizens in Four European Countries : Scotland Policy Brief
Taylor Yvette, Lawrence Matson, Andreasen Maja B
Trans inclusive Higher Education : strategies to support trans, non-binary and gender diverse students and staff
Mckendry Stephanie, Lawrence Matson
Strategies for Supporting Inclusion and Diversity in the Academy Higher Education, Aspiration and Inequality (2020) (2020)
The UK government LGBT Action Plan : discourses of progress, enduring stasis, and LGBTQI+ lives 'getting better'
Lawrence Matson, Taylor Yvette
Critical Social Policy (2019)
Supporting Transgender and Non-Binary Students and Staff in Further and Higher Education : Practical Advice for Colleges and Universities
Lawrence Matson, Mckendry Stephanie
Empowering Leadership to Support Transgender Students and Staff within Higher Education : What Works to Raise Awareness and Effect Change?
Mckendry Stephanie, Lawrence Matson
TransEDU Scotland : Researching the Experience of Trans and Gender Diverse Applicants, Students and Staff in Scotland's Colleges and Universities
Mckendry Stephanie, Lawrence Matson

More publications

Professional activities

Blog: 'It gets better? Intersectional LGBTQI+ (in)equalities and the UK Government’s LGBT Action Plan
From Section 28 to LGBTQI+ Inclusion? Legacies, tensions and trajectories in Education
How to help trans and non-binary students and staff - Tes Blog
How can staff in higher education support trans & non-binary people during transition? - JKP Blog
Transgender: Intersectional / International
Member of programme committee
National Gender Conference

More professional activities


Comparing Intersectional Life Course Inequalities amongst LGBTQ People in Five European Countries
Taylor, Yvette (Principal Investigator) Lawrence, Matson (Researcher)
01-Jan-2018 - 30-Jan-2021
Empowering leadership to support transgender students and staff within higher education
Mckendry, Stephanie (Principal Investigator) Lawrence, Matson (Principal Investigator)
There is increasing evidence that trans people face
significant challenges studying and working in higher
education (ECU, 2009; LGBT Youth Scotland, 2018; NUS,
2014; Stonewall, 2018a,b). Research undertaken at the
University of Strathclyde to explore the experiences and
challenges of this diverse group discovered a far greater
proportion of students considering or having left their
course, and issues around learning and teaching,
placements and confidentiality (Mckendry and Lawrence,
2017; Lawrence and Mckendry, forthcoming 2019). While
staff were often keen to support trans students, there was a
lack of awareness or training to provide background
context, a wider understanding of terminology or the
support requirements that might improve their student
experience. Similarly, trans and gender diverse staff
encountered barriers in relation to applying for roles and a
range of aspects of daily working life.

Building upon the University of Strathclyde research, this
project explored how to raise awareness effectively and
promote change and leadership. The project worked with
a sample of institutions to determine what materials would
be effective in increasing awareness of the transgender
population and building capacity and motivation to improve
support. Engagement also focused on developing
practical resources to enable positive change. The
TransEDU research team – Dr Stephanie Mckendry and
Dr Matson Lawrence – created and evaluated training
materials, policy templates, mapping documents and
multimedia resources that will inform university leaders
and practitioners about the lived experiences, support
needs and perspectives of trans students and staff.
The project developed the support website trans.ac.uk
as a free, open-access resource for those in higher
education supporting trans, non-binary and gender
diverse people. It includes training resources and
materials, case studies of best practice, animated
videos and guidance.
01-Jan-2017 - 01-Jan-2018
Developing Trans+ Policy and Provison in HE
Lawrence, Matson (Principal Investigator)
KE Partnership and Training Exchange with Trinity College Dublin
18-Jan-2017 - 25-Jan-2017
TransEdu Scotland: Investigating the experiences of, and current provision for, trans applicants, students and staff in Further and Higher Education across Scotland
Mckendry, Stephanie (Principal Investigator) Lawrence, Matson (Researcher)
27-Jan-2016 - 29-Jan-2017
Investigating the barriers faced by young disabled and D/deaf people in accessing youth arts provision in Scotland
Lawrence, Matson (Principal Investigator)
01-Jan-2015 - 01-Jan-2016

More projects