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DID YOU KNOW?

THE FASCINATING WORLD OF LGBTQ ASTRONOMERS, ASTROPHYSICISTS AND COSMOLOGISTS

Astronomy.jpg

Astronomy is the study of the existence and motion of planetary objects outside of earth. Cosmology delves deeper into the properties of these object (such as their origin and composition), while astrophysics uses the laws of physics and chemistry to understand their nature. All three fields of scientific study exude an air of mystery and comprehension beyond most people’s everyday lives, and often intersect with the imagination.

There is an active community of LGBTQ scientists in these fields of study. This community consists of students, faculty, staff, and librarians. Like any branch of science, it is important that their work be undertaken without any degree of personal bias, harassment, or discrimination. To ensure this, they have recently organized themselves into The Outlist of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Intersex, Queer, and Ally Astronomers.

LGBTQ scientists tend to be less visible members of the community at large. They tend to be absent when high profile lists of prominent LGBTQ individuals are compiled. One of the reasons is that, by the nature of scientific research itself, one’s sexual orientation is rarely conveyed in the output. This lack of visibility of participation and success raises concerns that it deters young people from choosing science as a career in the first place.

In a 2014 survey by the Royal Astronomical Society, of those who responded 3% identified as bisexual, 4% as gay men, and 0.2% as lesbian (of the 77.5% male respondents and 21.3% female). Another survey in the United States (2015) showed a lack of protection for LGBTQ scientists from harassment. There was a noted sense of isolation and marginalization amongst the respondents. Social norms have encouraged LGBTQ scientists to stay in the closet. Indeed, over one-third of LGBTQ scientists considered leaving their department or workplace in the past year based on their bad experience.

Clearly, there is a need for change and improvement. The fact a lesbian, Nergis Mavalvala, was a prominent member of the group of scientists who recently proved Einstein’s theory of the existence of gravitational waves is a big step forward. We applaud the LGBTQ astronomers, astrophysicists, and cosmologists we have been able to identify. They hail from Canada, the Netherlands, Pakistan, Great Britain, the United States, and Australia. To read their fascinating biographies CLICK HERE

Directory of past 'Did You Know?' Articles See Here


The goal of QueerBio.com is to be the definitive online biographical reference source for the international LGBTQ community. Its database lists over 13,000 contemporary and historical figures who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or queer, and includes artists, sports figures, politicians, entertainers, business leaders, academics, activists, and more. The database is widely international in scope and is an ideal source for research and analysis with full search and sort functionality.

The mission is to inspire, educate, and motivate all generations of LGBTQ individuals and others through a collective knowledge of this international community.


Managing Editors: Mark S. Bonham, Connie Bonello, Gordon Dunbar

Search for a Biography

To search for an individual from the database of over 13,000 biographies, simply type the name in the Search Box located in the top right hand corner of this Home Page and click on GO.

Alternatively, you can view and scroll through the entire list of biographies by viewing the All Biographies section.

To search for LGBTQ individuals with a common characteristic (examples: all Nobel Prize winners, all Writers, all Politicians, all Tony Award winners, all Olympic Gold medal winners, all individuals of a specific nationality) simply type the characteristic in the Search Box located in the top right hand corner of this Home Page and click on GO. Results of your search will be displayed alphabetically by Last Name. A second Search Box will be displayed for you to search within the database of individuals with that common characteristic.

Subscribe to our Bi-weekly Email Biography Newsletter

By subscribing to our bi-weekly email Biography Newsletter you will receive a regular email twice per month containing informative stories about notable international LGBTQ individuals or groups.


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Bonham Centre Awards Gala

Annual Awards established in 2007 to recognize individuals or groups that have made a significant contribution to the advancement and education of human rights issues surrounding sexual education. Click here to find out more about the Bonham Centre Awards, past recipients, and present nominees.

Our goal is to make QueerBio.com the go-to website for global biographical information on LGBTQ identified individuals. To do this requires a serious commitment of people and resources, so we need your help to fund and help this project grow. Click here for more information.

Books Available From QueerBio.Com

New books available

Notables: 101 Global LBGTQ People Who Changed the World reveals a group of select global Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer (LGBTQ) individuals whose accomplishments in their profession changed the world in some relevant way. Included are founders of various social movements, innovators in sports, leaders in business and politics, explorers and discoverers, instigators in religious movements, thinkers in philosophy, infamous villains, creators of new academic fields of study, and risk takers in the arts, culture, and entertainment worlds. 212 pages.

Champions: Biographies of Global LGBTQ Pioneers reveals a group of select artists, writers, politicians, lawyers, sports figures, activists, and religious figures from around the world who have helped shape the history of the LGBTQ community. Presented in a convenient notebook format. 114 pages.

Order for yourself, and the books also make an ideal gift for friends and family while supporting the development of QueerBio.Com

READ MORE AND PURCHASE THE BOOKS HERE