My name is Katie. I am a postdoctoral research associate based in the UK, specialising in applied linguistics and health communication. My research focuses on verbal dimensions of empathy and compassion and interactions in health and social care contexts. I am also a Japanese language tutor in the UK Higher Education sector.

I was born in Japan. After studying linguistics at Tokyo Woman’s Christian University, I worked for a software company in Tokyo. Although I had always nurtured a childhood dream of living overseas, in my twenties I was far too busy with long hours of work, and the years went by rather quickly!

In 2013, I attended the renowned Institut Villa Pierrefeu in Montreux, Switzerland to study International Protocol. The year after that, I resumed my stay in Switzerland to study with them further. There, what fascinated me the most was sessions on intercultural communication. I became more aware of miscommunication in various intercultural settings (in diplomatic, business, and educational settings) and enhanced self-awareness of how we transfer verbal and nonverbal messages while incorporating social and cultural perspectives.

In 2015, I decided to start my full-time MA studies in applied linguistics at the University of East Anglia. The following year, integrating all of my experience with a new direction, I started to pursue Health Communication for my PhD studies. I use qualitative methodologies, Interactional Sociolinguistics, face theory and ethnography to look at real-life interactions between patients and physicians.

My blog, Kaya (named after Buddha Kaya, which means Buddha’s three bodies – three kayas) has been devoted to sharing my informal research outputs, research diary, and thoughts on the body-mind connection. I also love cooking, baking and writing recipes.

Thank you for visiting my blog!

Best wishes,