Dr Claire Meehan

PhD, MSSc Criminology, Post Graduate Certificate in Education, BSc (Hons) in Criminology and Criminal Justice


Dr Claire Meehan is a Lecturer in Criminology working on the relationship between young people, digital technology and their sexual lives, expressions and relationships. She is particularly interested in their understandings of pornography, and ‘sexting’ or sending nudes in relation to the broader issues of consent, pleasure, age and gender and their perceived value of the education/ information they receive. She publishes in this area and is currently writing a book entitled The Role of Pornography for Young New Zealanders to be published by Palgrave, New York.

Claire has a mixed methods background but focuses on qualitative research. She has experience conducting research and teaching in Northern Ireland, London and New Zealand. Claire is a regular media commentator on topics including sharing intimate images, sex and sexuality education provision and pornography.

Claire is leading/ has led the following projects:

  • The Nudie Project: perceptions of consensual, coercive and non-consensual sharing of intimate images
  • Young New Zealanders and their digital sexual lives: youth attitudes towards sexting and pornography 
  • 'Sexy not Sexist': young people's exploration of pleasure and empowerment 
  • Incorporating social media into Higher Education pedagogy 

Research | Current

  • Young New Zealanders and their digital lives: youth attitudes towards sexting and pornography
  • Incorporating social media into Higher Education pedagogy
  • 'Sexy not Sexist': young people's exploration of pleasure and empowerment
  • The Nudie Project: perceptions of ‘sexting’, 'nudes' and ‘revenge porn’ in New Zealand

Teaching | Current

CRIM 710: Cybercrime

CRIM 780: Research Project in Criminology

CRIM 304: Key Issues in Restorative Justice

CRIM 205: Crime, Media and Society

CRIM 204: Critical Studies in Policing

Postgraduate supervision

Current supervision


  • Emma Barker-Clarke '#useyourvoice: a youth narrative of the strategies young people use to perpetrate harm, cultivate safety and manage their experiences of victimisation'
  • Canan Ezel Sertkaya 'Construction and presentation of gender identity on social media'
  • Sara Amin, 'Brand positioning in Pakistan and its impact on young people'

Master of Arts

  • Kankanange Dona Olivia Jayaweera 'How efficient is restorative justice in responding to rule breaking by secondary school students: lessons from New Zealand'
  • Jennifer Byrne 'The Police-Media Relationship and Social Construction of Online Child Sexual Grooming'

Completed MA supervision

  • Natalia Lu, 'Perceptions of cyberstalking in New Zealand: who is watching and who cares?'
  • Christopher Mc Cormick, 'The experiences of kin in online romance scams'
  • Dina Putinceva, ‘Should pornography be banned? censoring the censors’
  • Lachyn Miller, ‘Online romance scams and routine activity theory: discovering how online routine activities influence the chance of victimisation’

I welcome enquires from students interested in:

  • Pornography
  • Sexting/ sending nudes
  • Image based sexual abuse
  • Consent


2018-2019 Visiting Academic Fellow, The London School of Economics

2018 University of Auckland Early Career Teaching Excellence Award

2017 Faculty of Arts Early Career Teaching Excellence Award

2016 Women in Leadership

Areas of expertise

  • Young people's drug use
  • Harm reduction
  • Drug education
  • Sexting
  • Pornography

Committees/Professional groups/Services

  • Netsafe, New Zealand
  • The Centre for Addiction Research, University of Auckland
  • Australian and New Zealand Society of Criminology
  • International Harm Reduction Association
  • European Society for Social Drug Research

Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)

  • Meehan, C., & Wicks, E. (2020). "The new foreplay for teens": Mainstream media and teen sexting in Aotearoa/New Zealand. New Zealand Sociology, 35 (1), 1-24.
  • Meehan, C. (2020). ‘Lesbian porn. Anything girl on girl’: young women’s understandings of their engagement with lesbian porn. Porn Studies10.1080/23268743.2020.1756389
  • Meehan, C. (2019). The need for pornography education in New Zealand’s schools, and beyond. https://blogs.lse.ac.uk/parenting4digitalfuture/2019/07/24/sex-education-the-need-for-pornography-in-new-zealands-schools/. Related URL.
  • Meehan, C. (2019). Revenge porn is sexual abuse. https://www.newsroom.co.nz/@ideasroom/2019/02/25/453284/revenge-porn-is-sexual-abuse. Related URL.
  • Meehan, C. (2017). Sexting: technology is changing what young people share online. https://theconversation.com/sexting-technology-is-changing-what-young-people-share-online-82684. Related URL.
  • Meehan, C. (2017). Less fear, more knowledge in cybercrime fight. https://www.newsroom.co.nz/2017/10/23/54762/less-fear-more-knowledge-in-cybercrime-fight. Related URL.
  • Meehan, C. (2017). “It’s a proper site so you can trust it”: Students’ perceptions and use of online sources of information regarding recreational drugs. Journal of Applied Youth Studies, 2 (1), 31-42.
  • Meehan, C. (2017). "Junkies, wasters and thieves": School-based drug education and the stigmatisation of people who use drugs. Journal for Critical Education Policy Studies, 15 (1), 85-107.


Contact details

Primary office location

HSB - EAST - Bldg 201E
Level 9, Room 930
New Zealand

Social links

Web links