Portrait of Bernadine Farrell

Bernadine Farrell

PhD student
Social Anthropology


PhD project: Human-Information technology symbiosis and culinary culture

This research integrates two anthropological sub-disciplines, Food Anthropology and Digital Anthropology. It specifically looks at the complex system emerging from the symbiosis of human sensory apprehension and social memory with the technological processes of the (re-)imagination of ourselves, inventiveness and social representation. This normative argument is implied by the question, “What happens when technology becomes embedded within the body itself, thereby changing the very framework and starting point for perceiving the world?” (Jaller, C., 2018).

The sensorial, biological and social aspects of eating are a provocative physical channel from which to examine the co-created anticipation of taste, odour, texture and the aesthetics of food experience in conjoined digital and physical realms. 

An aim of this project is the development and use of a User Experience research approach. This includes quantitative and qualitative data collection alongside innovative methodology and research tools that explore the relationship between the technological, the human and the entangled human-technological processes of authenticating food culture and culinary places (Applin & Fischer, 2013). 

The research will contribute to the development of ethnographic research methodologies, case studies, new theories and theory-building tools that advocate an integration of digital and social sciences (Fischer et al, 2013). It explores digital and sensory ethnography to unpack some broader issues of computer-mediated, rapid social transformation and the concurrent redress of the role and framework of anthropology as a discipline that interprets social worlds that are digitally structured and experienced.


Professor Dimitrios Theodossopoulos
Dr Anna Waldstein
Professor Michael Fischer


University of Kent, Vice Chancellor's Research Scholarship

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