Research + Innovation Showcase: Minding the Gap

November 19, 2020 – Minding the Gap: Personalizing Behaviour Change to improve health using smartphones and wearable devices through collaborations between researchers and developers –  Pallavi Dutta & Kieran Kwok, McMaster eHealth Program

The proliferation of smartphone use has created new opportunities for researchers and healthcare teams. Smartphones provide many different capabilities, such as built-in sensors, the ability to download and use applications, and a companion that people carry around with them everywhere. This provides unmatched access to people and their lives, which can be leveraged for research by using smartphones as a data collection and intervention delivery tool for studying behaviour. In this talk, Pallavi and Kieran identify gaps between intentions and health behaviours and discuss their experiences in how researchers and developers can collaborate to create tools that can improve health.

Pallavi Dutta is a recent graduate of a thesis-based MSc. eHealth program at McMaster University. Her thesis focused on using a novel approach, known as Ecological Momentary Assessment, to sample participants multiple times throughout the day to study their intentions and motivations to be physically active. During her thesis, she collaborated with a development company to create a data collection tool for her research. Her work is an example of how researchers and developers can collaborate to build tools that can improve the health.

Kieran Kwok is a recent graduate of the MSc. eHealth program at McMaster University. During his internship at Lumedi in 2019, his team collaborated with Pallavi to customize their system for an Ecological Momentary Assessment study. Currently, Kieran is a product manager at Lumedi, working to diversify their data collection tools to enable digital research through secured data management for clinical and health research projects.