SAME 2023: Video Training for Research Impact, Academic Engagement and Science Communication


  • School of Anthropology & Museum Ethnography
  • University of Oxford
  • Video 4 Research – SAME – 2023

My current project, ‘Feeling at Home in a Digital World’, is an ethnography of how digital and physical domestic spaces interact, paying attention to how people craft spaces of wellbeing. This research builds on a key insight from my PhD: the home as a central site for care is now supplemented by digital spaces that allow for people to better calibrate closeness and distance, autonomy and dependence. I am drawing on my doctoral research with older adults in Japan to provide a comparative perspective with new ethnography conducted in Finland. This research contributes to urgent global debates around population ageing, digital participation, and the crisis of care. I am developing graphic research methods to investigate the affective dimensions of wellbeing and producing a graphic novel, alongside academic outputs. My work draws on the anthropology of ageing, material culture studies, digital anthropology, and studies of visual culture.

I completed my PhD in 2022 at University College London (UCL), with a thesis titled ‘Ageing with Smartphones in Japan: reimagining care in a visual digital age’. I am currently writing and illustrating a monograph based on my thesis. My doctoral work examines how experiences of later life in Japan are changing in the context of an ageing society, internal migration, the uptake of the smartphone, and the rise of visual digital communication. The research considers how older women and men negotiate oppressive structures within society, looking at how the smartphone at once challenges and perpetuates gender-based norms around care.

In the course of my doctoral studies I received several awards and fellowships including a Leach Fellowship in Public Anthropology from the Royal Anthropological Institute of Great Britain and Ireland (RAI), the UCL-Osaka Strategic Partnership Fund, and a research affiliation with Osaka University. In 2020, with support from the RAI, I co-curated the exhibition ‘Illustrating Anthropology’, attracting over 20,000 online visitors and gathering a community of scholars who are experimenting with graphic ethnography.

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