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Joint Institution for Gender Medicine

Univ.-Prof. Margarethe Hochleitner
Univ.-Prof. Margarethe Hochleitner
Joint Institution for Gender Medicine

Innrain 66/1st floor
6020 Innsbruck

Phone: +43 512 504 81162
Fax: +43.512.504.25719

Research Branch (ÖSTAT Classification)

305902 Gender Medizin 504013 Gender Mainstreaming 501021 Sozialpsychologie 504014 Gender Studies


academic career, diversity, gender mainstreaming, Gender medicine, interpersonal violence, medical education, migration/refugees, sexual and gender minorities, sexuality, social norms/ideologies, and women’s/men’s health

Research Focus

The focus of our research is the variable gender. Thereby, we consider gender as a multilevel variable beyond being a binary categorical variable. Gender identity, gender relations and gender norms are concepts of interest of our research. We highlight the different facets of how gender (intersecting with other sociodemographic characteristics) plays an important role in sexuality, experiences of violence, migration, education, academic career, seeking and receiving medical help, or medical practice.

General Facts

The Joint Institution for Gender Medicine and Diversity consists of two subsections, namely, a Women’s Health Clinic and a Research Institute.

The Women’s Health Clinic focuses on all women’s health issues. It is a routing station within the university clinics with a special focus on migrant women. The women’s health clinic comprises an outpatient department and an in-patient ward as well as undertaking a great amount of activity outside the hospital, such as in outpatient clinics and talks for women’s organisations.

The Research Institute of the Joint Institution for Gender Medicine and Diversity focuses on research and on providing courses in human medicine, dental medicine, molecular medicine and the PhD program on the inclusion of sex and gender as a biomedical variable in medical practice and research.


Medical Education

One central aspect is to understand how sex and gender influences well-being, health, illness, diagnosis, therapy and recovery. One major focus is the inclusion of facts about sex and gender in medical education. Throughout the medical curricular of human medicine, dental medicine, molecular medicine and the PhD program, we highlight that sex and gender need to be considered as variables in medical research and practice. Additionally, we conduct research to demonstrate optimal ways of how the topics of gender medicine can be included in the medical curriculum.


One major topic is finding ways to increase sexual well-being and satisfaction. Thereby, our research focuses on revealing how certain heteronormative standards and norms can be restrictive in achieving a fulfilling sexual experience.

Formal Help-Seeking

Many people might be reluctant to seek formal (e.g., medical) help when problems arise. Our research focuses on perceived barriers for obtaining help and considers gender, especially gender norms and ideologies that might influence people’s willingness to seek formal help.

Interpersonal Violence

Experiencing and perpetrating violence is often related to gender. In our research, we investigate gender norms and ideologies that influence the manner in which power and dominance is forced and enacted over other people; and how certain groups of people are especially affected by experiences of interpersonal violence (e.g., women, sexual and gender minority people, people who migrate).

Academic Career and Gender Mainstreaming

The academic career can be characterised by an androcentric work environment. Stereotypical expectations of the demeanour of a researcher, a physician or a leader can disadvantage many people who do not fulfil those stereotypical ideas.  This results in people, who are competent and well suited for certain positions, to experience disadvantages due to stereotypical ideas. In our research, we highlight how the academic career is influences by gender ideologies and gender relations. We formulate gender-mainstreaming measures that are necessary for equity in academic careers.

Men’s Health

For example, people who identify as men may try to adhere to masculine ideologies. Those masculine ideologies can include behaviours that are disadvantageous for health. Furthermore, trying to adhere to masculine ideologies can be restrictive and prevent certain men from realising their full potential. In our research, we focus on conceptualisations of masculine ideologies and reveal how adherence to or endorsement of masculine ideologies can be restrictive (but also advantageous) in certain contexts.



Involuntary migration can be very stressful and pose a risk for health and well-being. When arriving in a new country, people who migrated can often face discrimination. In our research, we reveal how people who migrated from Turkey face discrimination in Austria.


Selected Publications

Komlenac N, Eggenberger L, Walther A, Maresch F, Lamp E, Hochleitner M. Measurement invariance and psychometric properties of a German-language Conformity to Masculine Norms Inventory among cisgender sexual minority and heterosexually identified women and men. Psychol Men Masc. 2023;Advance online publication. doi: 10.1037/men0000429


Komlenac N, Hochleitner M. Heterosexual-identified men’s endorsement of masculinity ideologies moderates associations between pornography consumption, body satisfaction and sexual functioning. Psychol Sex. 2022;13:880-990. doi: 10.1080/19419899.2021.1936616.


Komlenac N, Stockinger L, Hochleitner M. Family supportive supervisor behaviors moderate associations between work stress and exhaustion: Testing the job demands – resources model in academic staff at an Austrian medical university. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2022;19(9):Article 5769. doi: 10.3390/ijerph19095769


Komlenac N, Langmann F, Hochleitner M. Explorative questionnaire study about education with regard to the health of sexual minorities at an Austrian medical university. J Homosex. 2022;Advance online publication. doi: 10.1080/00918369.2022.2085937


Komlenac N, Pittl M, Perkhofer S, Tucek G, Hochleitner M. Links between virginity beliefs, negative feelings after virginity loss and sexual performance anxiety in a sample of German-speaking heterosexual-identified women and men. J Sex Marital Ther. 2022;48(1):47-64. doi: 10.1080/0092623X.2021.1958963.

Selection of Funding

2022: Intramural funding program of the Medical University Innsbruck: MUI-START 2022-1-2 (€18,729.90)


2022: Land Tirol Wissenschaftsförderung Allgemein: F.44681/6-2022 (€9,900.-)


GiM Gender in Medicine, Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Berlin/Germany

Centre for Gender Medicine, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm/Sweden

Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy, University of Zurich, Zurich/Switzerland

Department of Clinical Radiology Research Group ‚Cognition and Gender, Münster/Germany

Gender Medicine Unit, Medical University of Vienna/Austria

Center Interdisziplinäre Geschlechterforschung Leopold Franzens Universität Innsbruck/Austria

Claudiana, Landesfachhochschule für Gesundheitsberufe, Bozen/Italy

FH Gesundheit, Health University of Applied Sciences Tyrol, Innsbruck/Austria