Dr Jason Danely

Reader in Anthropology of Japan

School of Law and Social Sciences

Jason Danely


Dr. Jason Danely is a Reader in Anthropology and Chair of the Healthy Ageing & Care Research Innovation and Knowledge Exchange Network. His research expertise relates to cultural understandings and experiences of ageing and care in Japan, where he has at various times taught, studied, performed theatre, travelled, meditated and raised children, over the last twenty years. Jason completed his PhD in anthropology at the University of California, San Diego. Before joining Brookes in 2014, he held teaching posts in the USA at Rhode Island College and Grand Valley State University. He has also received Postdoctoral Fellowships from The Center on Age and Community (University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee), and the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (Kyoto University). Jason has been invited to present his research on ageing to audiences around the world, including Japan, the USA, the Netherlands, Singapore, and Canada. Jason was President of the Association for Anthropology, Gerontology and the Life Course (2016-18) and Convenor/Founder of the EASA Age and Generations Network (2018-2020), the first scholarly network of Europe-based anthropologists researching aging. Jason is currently the Chair of the WAU/IUAES Scientific Commission on Aging and the Life Course.

In 2015, Jason was one of 20 early-career scholars from around the world to be awarded a John Templeton Foundation Enhancing Life Project Award. Jason's project examined compassion and vulnerability in the context of unpaid care in two aging societies (Japan and England). His latest book, Fragile Resonance: Caring for Older Family Members in Japan and England (out October 2022) is based on this research. His current research focuses on the lives of formerly incarcerated older adults in Japan and England, 




Teaching and supervision


Modules taught


  • ANTH5003 Ritual and Society 
  • ANTH5015 Health, Culture and Ecology 


Currently accepting Masters by Research or MPhil/PhD research students

Research Students

Name Thesis title Completed
Alexandra Chesters The Joy of Possessions and Decluttering in Japan and the West Active
Brittany Rapone Cultural Influences Behind Exotic Pet Cafés in Japan and their Relation to the International Pet Trade Active


Dr. Jason Danely has expertise on the cultural dimensions of ageing, caring, family relations, and mortuary  and memorial ritual practices in Japan. In 2018, he was awarded an SSRC Abe Fellowship for his research on the resettlement of formerly incarcerated older adults in Japan and the UK.

Jason is interested in supervising postgraduate work in psychological and medical anthropology, ageing and the life course, care, religious and ritual practice, issues surrounding frailty, death and dying, incarceration and care of criminalised older people.

Centres and institutes



  • Comparison of older ex-offender resettlement and community-based organisations for reducing recidivi

Projects as Principal Investigator, or Lead Academic if project is led by another Institution

  • Sasakawa Studentship 2023 (01/09/2023 - 31/08/2024), funded by: Great Britain Sasakawa Foundation, funding amount received by Brookes: £10,000


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