Welcome to the Society for Menstrual Cycle Research

The Society for Menstrual Cycle Research is a nonprofit, interdisciplinary research organization. Our membership includes researchers in the social and health sciences, humanities scholars, health care providers, policy makers, health activists, artists and students with interests in the role of the menstrual cycle in women’s health and well-being.

We strive to be the source of guidance, expertise, and ethical considerations for researchers, practitioners, policy makers and funding resources interested in the menstrual cycle. The Society holds biennial meetings featuring presentations of the latest research by members.


Conference Highlights
  • Keynote by Reproductive Justice Pioneer, Loretta Ross
  • Kick off Flash! plenary showcasing several short diverse talks that make the menstrual connection

including the triumphant arrival of the cross-country cycling activists from Sustainable Cycles

Film Screenings


Menstrual health is central to women’s ability to lead lives of dignity and well being in every society and every part of the world. Without menstrual health other core rights remain in jeopardy. In fact, the UNDP and UNICEF have highlighted menstruation as “the single most important factor affecting school drop-out among girls” (2007), impeding the educational attainment that would facilitate social empowerment and financial independence around the globe. Yet, menstrual health is rarely respected, protected, or fulfilled as a human right, and has not been recognized or theorized as a reproductive justice issue.

“Stigma around menstruation and menstrual hygiene is a violation of several human rights, most importantly of the right to human dignity, but also of the right to non-discrimination, equality, bodily integrity, health, privacy, and the right to freedom from inhumane and degrading treatment from abuse and violence.”

Dr. Jyoti Sanghera, Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights


Low cost housing (at Suffolk University) in the heart of downtown Boston will be available. To reserve a room, download this form [pdf] and send directly to Suffolk University Housing with your payment, as instructed on the form.


We also seek spoken word artists and poets to participate in our second Menstrual Poetry Open Mic. Performers will sign up the evening of the event (Saturday, June 6, at 7pm). Need more info or encouragement? Contact our Open Mic Coordinator, Porsha R. Olayiwola at polayiw2@gmail.com

Got questions? Check the list of Frequently Asked Questions.

Can you help us publicize the conference?  Here’s a full-color 8 1/2 x 11 pdf, suitable for posting online and off. Here’s a press release [pdf], suitable for sharing with local and national media outlets. 

Finally, an overview of the conference schedule is available here.

This exciting conference brought to you by:

Boston 2015 Conference Co-Chairs

  • Chris Bobel, U Massachusetts, Boston, and SMCR President-elect (chris.bobel@umb.edu)
  • Amy Agigian, Suffolk University, Director of the Center for Women’s Health and Human Rights (aagigian@suffolk.edu)

Boston 2015 Program Committee

  • Co-chair, Jane Ussher, University of Western Sydney
  • Co-chair, Janette Perz, University of Western Sydney
  • Co-chair, Heather Dillaway, Wayne State University
  • Ingrid Johnston-Robledo, Castleton College, and SMCR President
  • Megan White Mukuria, ZanaAfrica
  • Annie Smith, ZanaAfrica
  • Marlene Gerber Fried, Hampshire College, Director of Civil Liberties and Public Policy Program
  • Toni Leonard, Past Executive Director of Black Women for Reproductive Justice

Boston Local Team

  • Clara Hendricks
  • Sheryl Mendlinger
  • Jax Gonzalez
  • Kelly Renn

Because menstruation is a human right.

Robin Danielson Act Introduced on Menstrual Hygiene Day

Communities around the world marked the first Menstrual Hygiene Day on May 28, 2014, to break the silence and build awareness about the fundamental role that good menstrual hygiene management (MHM) plays in enabling women and girls to reach their full potential. Representative Carolyn Maloney of New York’s 12th District chose this as the ideal day to introduce an updated version of the Robin Danielson Bill, legislation to study the health effects of menstrual hygiene products. The Robin Danielson Act of 2014 would require the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to research whether menstrual hygiene products that contain dioxin, synthetic fibers, and other chemical additives like chlorine and fragrances, pose health risks. SMCR is among many organizations endorsing this bill. We urge you to contact your representative and encourage them to support the Robin Danielson Act of 2014.

Membership in the Society for Menstrual Cycle Research is open to individuals who have an interest in research on the menstrual cycle or related issues, and who support the purposes of the Society. Dues are $60 for one year or $110 for two years, and we also offer a self-selecting sliding-scale rate starting at $25. Membership benefits include receiving the Society Newsletter, registration in the members-only Society Email Discussion List, discounted conference fee, and receipt of our journal Women’s Reproductive Health (publication begins in early 2014). Everything about how to join the Society is available here.