Björn-Ole KAMM

Academic Staff

Björn-Ole KAMM

Junior Associate Professor
Program Coordinator (Focus Advisor VMC)

Contact Information

(replies on Tue & Thu)

+81 750 753 2462

Kyoto University
Graduate School of Letters
Yoshida honmachi, Sakyō-ku
Kyoto 606-8501
Room: Faculty of Arts Build. [7], 2nd floor, room 207

Tue 15:00-16:30 by appointment (April-July 2022):
Please select a slot here (for online meetings, the Zoom link is provided within).

Björn-Ole KAMM coordinates the program at Kyoto University and teaches foundational theories and approaches of a transcultural perspective. His personal background is in Japanese Studies with an emphasis on media psychology, co-creative practices, and qualitative methods.

Note to Research Students (研究生): I cannot serve as your supervisor (see here). Please go through the AAO for support and inquiries.

Dr. phil. in Japanese Studies, Heidelberg University
Magister (M.A.) in Japanese Studies and Communication & Media Studies, Leipzig University

Cultural Ordering, Cyber-Ethnography, Educational Role-Playing, Media Psychology (Uses & Gratifications)

Co-creation, cultural mediation, live-action role-play (larp), performativity, relational materialism, transculturality, trans-gender

My previous work concerned media and cultural psychological approaches, concentrating on the uses and gratifications of Japanese and German users of the so-called boys’ love genre. Subsequently, I focused on the dynamics of inclusion and exclusion, affect and subject formation in networked communities of interest, the agency of stereotypes, and of cultural mediators within the transcultural sphere of role-playing games. Currently, my research deals with learning effects and how live-action role-playing can be employed not only for therapeutic means but also for the presentation of research results.
This research builds on the expertise I gained in Japanese Studies but seeks to overcome the “nation-state default mode” of studying culture, which has brought me to the interdisciplinary field of transculturality. The transregional outlook of this approach is based on the perspective that cultures are not contained within homogenous and territorially bounded spheres but that they are constituted through transformations and entanglements. Transculturality informs not only my research but also my teaching: Students will learn to unpack established concepts and are geared towards empirical studies of cultural processes.

For further info, see also my personal website:

2017 – Present
Junior Associate Professor, Graduate School of Letters, Kyoto University

2015 – 2017
Program-specific Senior Lecturer, Center for the Promotion of Interdisciplinarity in Education and Research (CPIER)/Graduate School of Letters, Kyoto University

2013 – 2015
Graduate Program Lecturer, Cluster “Asia & Europe in a Global Context,” Heidelberg University

2012 – 2013
Research Fellow, GCOE “Reconstruction of the Intimate and Public Spheres,” Kyoto University

2011 – 2012
Research Area Coordinator, Cluster “Asia & Europe in a Global Context,” Heidelberg University

A complete list of publications can be accessed here.

[1] Kamm, B-O. 2020. Role-Playing Games of Japan – Transcultural Dynamics and Orderings. New York: Palgrave.

[2] Kamm, B-O. 2019. “A Short History of Table-Talk and Live-Action Role-Playing in Japan: Replays and the Horror Genre as Drivers of Popularity.” Simulation & Gaming 50 (5): 621-44. doi:10.1177/1046878119879738.

[3] Kamm, B-O. 2019. “Live-Action Role-Play (Larp) as a Serious Gaming Tool for Awareness Raising: The Case of hikikomori (Acute Social Withdrawal)” [in Japanese]. Japanese Journal of Occupational Science 13 (1): 32-44. doi:10.32191/jjos.13.1_32.

[4] Kamm, B-O. 2019. “Adapting Live-Action Role-Play in Japan: How ‘German’ Roots Do Not Destine ‘Japanese’ Routes.” Replaying Japan 1, pp. 64-78.

[5] Kamm, B-O. 2017. “Translating Research into Larp: Village, Shelter, Comfort.” In Rafael Bienia, Gerke Schlickmann, LARP: Silberhochzeit. Braunschweig, Zauberfeder, pp. 31-60.
See also TEDxKyoto Talk in 2017.

[6] Kamm, B-O. 2017. “Brokers of ‘Japaneseness:’ Bringing Table-Top J-RPGs to the ‘West’.” Mutual Images Journal, vol. 2., pp. 44-81.

[7] Kamm, B-O. & Becker, J. 2016. “Live-Action Roleplay; or the Performance of Realities.” In Simulation and Gaming in the Network Society, edited by T. Kaneda, H. Kanegae, Y. Toyoda, and P. R. Cotti. Singapore: Springer.

[8] Kamm, B-O 2016. “Cross-Gender Table-Talk-RPG auf Japanisch; oder, die beiläufigen Realitäten des Tischrollenspiels” [Cross-Gender Table-Talk-RPG in Japanese; or, the Collateral Realities of Table-Top Roleplaying]. In Japanische Populärkultur und Gender, edited by M. Mae, E. Scherer, and K. Hülsmann, 273–303. Wiesbaden: VS.

[9] Galbraith, P., Kam, T. H., Kamm, B.-O. (eds.) 2015. Debating Otaku in Contemporary Japan: Historical Perspectives and New Horizons (SOAS Studies in Modern and Contemporary Japan). London: Bloomsbury Academic.

[10] Kamm, B.-O. 2013. “’Rotten’ Use Patterns: What Entertainment Theories Can Do for the Study of Boys’ Love.” In “Transnational Boys’ Love Fan Studies,” edited by K. Nagaike and K. Suganuma, special issue, Transformative Works and Cultures, no. 12. doi:10.3983/twc.2013.0427.

[11] Kamm, B.-O. 2010. Nutzen und Gratifikationen bei Boys’ Love Manga – Fujoshi oder verdorbene Mädchen in Japan und Deutschland [Uses and Gratifications of Boys‘ Love Manga – Fujoshi or rotten girls in Japan and Germany]. Hamburg: Kovac.