UCL Anthropology

Dr Carrie Ryan

Dr Carrie Ryan

Lecturer (Teaching)

Dept of Anthropology

Faculty of S&HS

Joined UCL
15th Nov 2019

Research summary

Carrie’s main research in the United States and the United Kingdom focuses on ageing and care.


Her work in the US explores how older adults find meaning and build community in increasingly precarious ageing trajectories. For this research, Carrie spent two years living and working part-time as an Activities Assistant in a continuing Care Retirement Community in Los Angeles. She also trained as a Death Midwife during this time. Through this research she has written on risk, bingo, conscious dying, and affective caregiving. 


Her work in the UK examines older adult loneliness and the impact of community activities on older adult wellbeing. She approaches these topics primarily through a social and medical perspective, but she is increasingly turning towards the biosocial to think how music and games, for example, sustain life.

Teaching summary

Carrie convenes:

  • Aspects of Applied Medical Anthropology (UG/PG)

She also teaches on:

  • Being Human (UG)
  • Biosocial Anthropology Core Seminar (PG)
  • Medical Anthropology Core Seminar (PG)
  • Anthropology for Medical Students (UG)
  • Theory Ethnography and Professional Practice (PG)


Carrie is a Teaching Fellow in Biosocial Medical Anthropology in the Department of Anthropology at UCL. She received her PhD in Anthropology from Oxford University in 2018.

Before joining UCL, Carrie was a Tutor in Anthropology at Oxford and an Associate Lecturer in Anthropology at Oxford Brookes. She then worked as a Research Fellow at the Oxford Institute of Population Ageing on a project examining the intersection of ageing wellbeing, loneliness, and the arts. She has worked in nursing homes and retirement communities for over ten years.

Carrie is an Affiliate with the Institute of Social and Cultural Anthropology at Oxford University and the Oxford Institute of Population Ageing.