University of Hertfordshire

Professor Kathryn Almack


Kathryn Almack

Professor Kathryn Almack


Postal address:
University of Hertfordshire, Hatfield, Hertfordshire
United Kingdom


Research interests

Kathryn's research is inter-disciplinary across areas including family sociology, the life course; gender and sexuality; inequalities; health and illness, health and social care policy.

Her research interests fall into three broad areas:

  • Family sociology addressing the moral terrains and normative notions around families and relationships that people negotiate in their everyday lives. Kathryn's research in this area includes investigations of family lives in the context of same sex parenthood; parents with young adults with intellectual disabilities; end of life experiences and needs within familial settings in a diverse range of contexts.
  • Inequalities and intersections relating to care, sexual identities and intimacy across the life-course. In this area Kathryn's most recent focus has been on exploring experiences of end of life and care needs in the lives of older LGBT people. This highlights evidence of feared and real inequities in professional care services but also throws light on broader issues of old age, living well and dying well.
  • The everyday family lives of children and young people, in particular children and young people living in or with difficult circumstances (such as parental separation/parental or sibling illness; living with a long term chronic illness). Including questions of what resources and interventions children, young people and their families draw upon in such circumstances; how such ‘troubles’ are defined and addressed by policy and professional interventions.

Research interests

Recent and ongoing grants:

2017 – 19: Harding, R., Bristowe, K., King, M, Almack, K.

ACCESSCare II - bereavement outcomes for LGB and heterosexual bereaved partners: a population based cross sectional mixed methods study.
Marie Curie Research Programme: £193,284

2015-16:  Hafford-Letchfield, T., Almack, K., Willis, P. and Simpson, P. 

Developing an LGBTI inclusive environment for older people living in care homes.
Comic Relief Care Home Challenge (with Research Partner, Anchor Housing Trust) £20,000

2014-16: Harding, R., Daveson, B., Almack, K.

ACCESSCare: Advanced Cancer Care Equality Strategy for Sexual minorities.
Marie Curie Research Programme: £110,059

2012-15:  Almack, K.(PI), Seymour, J., Yip, A., Sargeant, A.

The Last Outing: End of life care: the experiences and needs of lesbian, gay and bisexual and trans (LGBT) elders.
Marie Curie Research Programme: £163,281

2013-15:  King, A., Almack, K., Yiu-Sung, T., Westwood, S.

Older Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans People: Minding the Knowledge Gaps. 
Economic and Social Research Council Seminar Series grant: £14,505

2010-11:   Seymour, J., Almack, K., Cox, K.

The End of Life Care Programme: an evaluation. Phase II. 
DoH End of Life Strategy. £51,000

2011:  Almack, K.

The vulnerabilities and resilience of family relationships in end of life care. 
Cancer Experiences Collaborative: £3880

2011:  Almack, K., (PI) and Seymour, J.

The End of Life Care Programme: evaluating social care integration. 
National End of Life Care Programme: £5,500


Impact/Knowledge Exchange Project grants

 2016:  Almack, K. and Caswell, G.

Open house: talking about death and dying: The event will inform the general public about sociological research findings related to opening up conversations about death and dying.
ESRC Festival of Social Science: £500

2015-16:   Almack, K.

Training/information resource for diversity training in an end of life context and to raise awareness of the needs of LGBT people.
University Of Nottingham's ESRC Impact Acceleration Account and supported by the agreed collaboration from the National Council of Palliative Care £2500 (maximum award).

2014:   Almack, K.

Ageing and care for older LGBT people: film and chat
Included brief highlights of findings from The Last Outing research project; screening of a critically acclaimed US documentary on this subject (Gen Silent) followed by a Q&A panel with invited expert participants.
ESRC Festival of Social Science: £780

2012-13:  Almack, K.

Later life care needs of lesbian, gay and bisexual and trans people.
National End of Life Care Programme (NEOLCP):  £11,000

2010-11:  Seymour, J., Almack, K. and Froggatt, K.

Advance care planning for older people: developing information resources and a peer education training programme. (Revised, 2014)
National Council of Palliative Care and NEOLCP: £16,960




Commercial and public engagement

Invitations to address conferences / seminars

2017 Symposia chair & convenor/invitations to address conferences

2017  Almack, K. The Impact of Sexual and Gender Orientation on End of Life Care. Primary Care and Public Health Conference 2017. Invited speaker

2017  Almack, K. Presentation and Discussion of Results of the Research Project “The Last Outing – exploring End of Life Experiences and Care Needs in the Lives of Older LGBT people. LGBT*I & AGING: Needs, opportunities and challenges. Lesbian, Gay, Bi, Trans* and Intersex Aging in Theory and Practice. Alice Salomon University of Applied Science. Berlin, Germany

2017  Almack, K ‘End of the Rainbow - UK research into the end-of-life experiences and care needs of LGBT elders. GRAI (GLBTI Rights in Ageing Inc), Perth, Australia

2017  Almack, K. Being Accepted, Being Me: why visibility of older LGBT people at the end of life matters. Macmillan National Palliative Care Conference, Edinburgh, March 2017

2017 Almack, K "Is Everyone Equal In Old Age? End Of Life Care For Older Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual And Trans People" 21st IAGG World Congress of Gerontology and Geriatrics. Invited symposium contributor (Trajectories of Care for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans Ageing Populations)

2017  Almack, K and Gutman, G (symposium convenors/ chairs) The impacts of LGBT life courses and identities in later life. Symposium for the 21st IAGG World Congress of Gerontology and Geriatrics.

Invited keynote

2013  Marie Curie Annual Palliative Care Research Conference, London, UK.
'Paying attention to difference to provide equality: an overview of research addressing the palliative and end of life care needs of older  lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans (LGBT) people'.

Invited lectures/symposiums – international conferences

2015  Almack, K. (2015). Navigating Personal Networks: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans Older People’s Networks of Support Towards The End Of Life. International Association of Gerontology and     Geriatrics: European Region Congress: Unlocking the Demographic Dividend. Dublin, Ireland.
Invited co-convenor of an international symposium: LGBT New Ageing, with Professor Gutman    (past president of IAGG). Co-presenters: Brian De Vries (Simon Fraser University, USA), Agnes     Higgins, (Trinity College Dublin, Ireland) and Gerardo Zamora (Public University of Navarra, Spain).

2014  Symposium: New LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans) Ageing Populations, with UK colleagues A. Patterson, L. Bailey, J. Traies and P. Willis. British Society of Gerontology Conference.  New understanding of old age and the lifecourse. Southampton, UK.

2013  Roundtable discussion: Gender and Sexuality as Magnifiers of Later Life Concerns with S. Westwood (University of Keele); Y.T. Suen, (Chinese University of Hong Kong); L. Bailey, (University of Hull). Hughes, M. (Southern Cross University) and Lowe, J. (GLBTI Rights in Ageing, Australia).    Annual Conference of the British Society of Gerontology, Oxford, UK.

2013  Symposium: The LGBT Community and Culturally Proficient Palliative Care: Unique          Perspectives, Emerging Needs. With US colleagues at the Social Work Hospice & Palliative Care Network conference, New Orleans, US. (Contribution was video-recorded to be shown as part           of the symposium).

2009  British Sociological Association Families and Relationships Colloquium - Re-thinking concepts: families, intimacies and personal relationship. Leading sociologists discussing key concepts in this field.  My contribution invited on experiences around end of life care and bereavement within families.  BSA, London.

2004  Seeking sperm: access and motivations relating to lesbian couples use of donor insemination. 7th Congress of the European Federation of Sexology, Brighton, UK.

Selected invited presentations – UK seminars/workshops

2015  Ageing and care for older lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans people. Compton Hospice Annual Conference 'Disadvantaged Dying: End of Life Care for All?'. Wolverhampton.

2015  Is Everyone Equal in Old Age? Planning in Old Age and Towards the End of Life for Older Lesbian,  Gay, Bisexual and Trans People. Marie Curie Research Seminar, London.

2014  Making Person Centred care a reality: How to support lesbian and gay older people in care settings.  A specialist training day for professionals working in the care sector. Newcastle.

2013  Overview of research and gaps in knowledge about end of life care for LGBT people. Policy Ethics and Life Sciences Research centre (PEALS) Newcastle University (PEALS) seminar.

2013  What do we know about older LGBT people’s experiences and concerns about death and dying?  Sheffield Death Group seminar.

2012  Last outing: Improving care and support towards the end of life for LGBT people. Over the Rainbow: AgeUK and Equity Northern Partnership conference for older LGBT people, policy makers and practitioners. Spoke alongside Peter Tatchell.

Others include practitioners and service user conferences organised by the Older Lesbian and Gay Association (OLGA), Yorkshire; AgeUK event for older lesbians, gay men and bisexuals.

Conference papers (listed for 2014-16, full list available if required)

Peer reviewed abstracts (leading to oral presentations unless otherwise noted.)

Fish, J., Almack, K. and King, A. (2016). The relationship between historical study and LGBTI political activism in health care, same sex parenting and ageing. The Third ‘What is & How to Do LGBT History Conference’: Methods, Subjects, & Approaches. Manchester, England.

Almack, K. (2016). The legacy of stigma for LGBT people and the impact in their older age. Unequal Families and Relationships: Fifth International Conference of the Centre for Families and Relationships Research. Edinburgh, Scotland.

Almack., K. and Patterson, A. (2016). Navigating Personal Networks: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans Older People’s Networks Of Support Towards The End Of Life. The Futures We Want: Global Sociology and the Struggles for a Better World. Third International Sociological Association Forum of Sociology. Vienna, Austria.

Almack, K. (2015). An ordinary death: disjunctions between policy perspectives about end of life care and the everyday experiences within families of dying and death. Family Troubles: Care and Change in Diverse Contexts, One-day Symposium, University of Reading, UK.

Almack, K. (2015). Navigating Personal Networks: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual And Trans Older People’s Networks of Support Towards The End Of Life. Intersections of Ageing, Gender, Sexualities International Conference, Surrey, UK

Almack, K. (2015). LGBT Familial and friendship networks towards the end of life. Queer Kinship and Relationships International Conference. Zalesie, Masuria, Poland.

Almack, K., Patterson, A. and Seymour J. (2015). “I have no wish to be at the tender mercies of a homophobic carer/service”: exploring end of life experiences and care needs in the lives of older lesbian, gay, bisexual or trans (LGBT) people. Royal College of Nursing (RCN) Annual International Nursing Research Conference and Exhibition, Nottingham, UK. Prize for best oral presentation.

Almack, K. (2014). The legacy of stigma for older LGBT people: British Sociological Association, Social Aspects of Death, Dying and Bereavement Study Group: 'Death, Inequality and Social Difference'. London, UK.

Almack, K., Patterson, A. and Makita, M. (2014). Negotiating personal networks: lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans older people’s networks of support towards the end of life. British Sociological Association Annual Conference Changing Society.  University of Leeds, UK.

Patterson, A., Makita, M. and Almack, K. (2014). Respecting ‘significant others’ in ‘non-traditional’ relationships; end of life care and preserving quality of dying for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans (LGBT) people. Poster presented at the 8th World Research Congress of the European Association for Palliative Care. Lleida, Spain.