Emma Cook degree icon

Associate Professor

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Research Faculty of Media and Communication, Hokkaido University

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Feel free to contact me at:

cook [at] imc.hokudai.ac.jp

Food Allergies and Sociality in Japan and the UK

This project, funded by a three-year Japanese government JSPS Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research (C) grant, looks at the social and institutional experiences of food allergies in Japan and the UK. As food allergies increase around the world new discourses are developing in relation to public spaces and food safety. This has led to an increase in food labelling, greater public awareness of such conditions and the potential risks and dangers that sufferers experience. Initiatives related to food safety for children with allergies, and food labelling more generally, have begun to gain wider public recognition, yet understandings of the realities of allergies and their risk factors varies publicly (for example, throughout the restaurant industry) and privately (for example, within sufferers homes and networks).

This project consequently seeks to explore individuals’ experiences of food allergies in Japan and the UK. Moreover, it seeks to understand how individuals negotiate emerging discourses of food allergies as well as increased medical knowledge and practice surrounding such conditions.

Questions that this research deals with include (but are not limited to): How do food allergies affect social relationships in various contexts? In what ways has increased knowledge of food allergies shaped individual coping strategies (if at all)? What kinds of interactions are occurring with medical practitioners and how do these interactions shape understandings and lived experiences of allergies? What is the relationship between food, the body, and sociality for people with food allergies in different cultural contexts?

I am currently looking for individuals to share their experiences with me through interviews in person or via Skype. If you are interested in participating in this research and sharing your experiences please contact me at cook[at]imc.hokudai.ac.jp



このプロジェクトは、日本学術振興会学術研究助成基金助成金(基盤研究(C)(一般) 平成 28年度~平成 30年度を頂きました。タイトルは「When Food is Risky: Food Allergies in Japan and the UK」(課題番号: 16K03211)。

この研究は 私の個人的な経験からはじまりました。私は魚、貝やナッツのアレルギーがあります 。英国での経験と日本での私の個人的な経験を比較して、私は、経験の異なる文化的背景の人々が理解する方法に興味を持つようになっており、社会のさまざまな分野で食物アレルギーの研究をします。


stalls at night

Nakajima Park, Sapporo