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Sociology Department
Bryn Mawr College
101 North Merion Avenue
Bryn Mawr, PA 19010-2899
Phone: (610) 526-5030/5331
Fax: (610) 526-5655

   Ayumi Takenaka

My research interests center on the movement of people, ideas, goods and food -- their causes and consequences, as well as the notion of borders and boundaries, as seen through these movements.  These interests reflect my personal background of having lived and worked in different countries and my love for travel, languages, and tasting (and cooking) world-wide cuisine.  I have conducted ethnographic work in Peru, the U.S., Japan, the U.K., and Mexico, and like to engage in comparative research across countries.

I have a penchant for “unusual” populations, and have studied Japanese-Peruvians, Asian Latinos, multiple migrants, and the super mobile.  Currently, I am particularly interested in exploring the relationship between geographical mobility and social mobility.  What is the impact of migration on social mobility and vice versa?  Who moves where and how do they decide on their destinations?  Where do they “make it,” and what does it mean to “make it”?  I explore these questions, using a combination of ethnographic research, interviews, and quantitative data analysis.

My current projects include:

  • Social mobility of immigrants in Japan in comparative perspective
  • Global talent mobility—how countries compete for global talent and how skilled migrants decide where to move and stay
  • Re-migration of immigrants from Japan and the UK to the US
  • Asian Latinos—migration of Latin Americans of Asian descent

Ayumi Takenaka's Homepage