Mia Ford

Mia Ford


In 2014, I moved to Leeds to start my undergraduate degree at the University of Leeds in Social Policy and Sociology and like many folk, I never left. In 2018, I graduated with a First-Class Honours, for which I received the Wheeler Memorial Prize for the best academic performance in Social Policy.

After a year spent working in a local bar applying for research projects, in 2019 I received ESRC 1+3 funding for my PhD exploring gender and chronic illness. In 2020, I completed my Master’s in Social Research (Interdisciplinary) with a Distinction. I was given the Fiona Williams Prize for Critical Analysis of Inequalities. My MA dissertation, Dating with Multiple Sclerosis: The emotional work of online dating with an episodic, chronic illness in the United Kingdom, focused on how people with multiple sclerosis engage with significant amounts of emotional work when dating online, which I argue is a form of psycho-emotional disablism (see Carol Thomas (1999) and Kirsty Liddiard (2017)). 

I am trained in advanced qualitative and quantitative methods and hope that my research will contribute to the ways social scientists can produce intersectional and mixed-method research.

Research interests

My current PhD research adopts a mixed-method, longitudinal approach to understand how gender impacts the diagnosis and health outcomes of women with multiple sclerosis. Women are currently three times more likely to be diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, but the increasing gender bias is unexplained. By adopting a social science lens, my project aims to explore how gender intersects with other social factors (such as, class, race, age and disability) that affect women’s experiences of multiple sclerosis. 

My PhD project is in collaboration with Leeds Teaching NHS Hospital Trust. 

My research interests:

  • Health inequalities 
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Intersectional feminism
  • Embodiment
  • Intersectional methodology (both qualitative and quantitative)
  • Mixed-methods
  • Disability Studies
  • Queer Theory


  • BA Social Policy and Sociology (International): Class I
  • MA Social Research (Interdisciplinary): Distinction

Research groups and institutes

  • Centre for Interdisciplinary Gender Studies
  • Centre for Disability Studies