Dr Laura Haapio-Kirk

I am a social anthropologist whose work focuses on the intersection of digital technologies, ageing, and wellbeing. I received my Ph.D. from University College London in 2022 and am currently a Junior Research Fellow in Anthropology at Christ Church, University of Oxford. 

I have held visiting research fellowships at The University Osaka and The University of Jyväskylä and was a Leach Fellow in Public Anthropology at the Royal Anthropological Institute of Great Britain and Ireland (RAI).

My first book, Ageing with Smartphones in Japan; care in a visual digital age, will be out in August 2024, published by UCL Press. It provides a critical overview of how experiences of later life are changing in Japan in the context of an ageing society, internal migration, and the uptake of the smartphone. 

My new project, ‘Feeling at Home in a Digital World’, is currently in the fieldwork stage. The aim is to understand how the interaction of digital and physical spaces impacts on conceptions of home, in particular on how older adults craft spaces of wellbeing. I am conducting fieldwork in various sites in Finland, including Lapinlahden Lähde, an old psychiatric hospital which has been turned into a cultural centre for wellbeing in Helsinki.

Laura Haapio-Kirk looking at a map

My work centres graphic methods as a way to understand the affective dimensions of wellbeing. I am fascinated by graphic ethnography and the potential of drawing to reveal insights about our feelings and inner lives. 

I am sharing this research journey through illustrated newsletters and I hope you’ll join me on the adventure!

Contact me: laura.haapio-kirk (at) chch.ox.ac.uk

Photos taken in the Christ Church College Library by Ian Wallman.