Australian study identifies 30 gender identities

They range from non-binary to pangender

From genderfluid and non-binary to genderqueer, the world has grappled in recent years with the growing spectrum of how people identify.


Now an Australian study has found more than 30 separate gender definitions available on social media platforms or offered by government institutions.

Alongside the traditional male and female, these include:

  • pangender
  • poligender
  • androgyne 
  • demigirl
  • demiboy
  • agender
  • gender non-conforming
  • non-binary

The research, based on Queensland University of Technology's Australian Sex Survey, has found that women have more choice than men, according to its author Dr Stephen Whyte (PhD) from the university's business school.

"While gender can no doubt be a complex issue for males, our research showed just how many factors can influence a female's decision, including reproductive pressure, labour market inequality and disproportionate levels of education," he says.

Even height can be a defining factor, "with taller females more likely to identify as non-binary", Dr Whyte says in a press release.

Most older respondents opt for the binary definitions of male and female.

Questions of gender self-identification have split public opinion around the world.

In the US, the election of Donald Trump as president has effectively ended the debate begun under the Obama administration over whether to add a gender identity question to the national census.

Many young people state their preferred pronouns on social media, with some opting for the gender-neutral "they/them".

According to the WHO, gender "refers to the socially constructed characteristics of women and men, such as norms, roles and relationships of and between groups of women and men".

More information: Archives of Sexual Behaviour2018; online.

# Tags