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5 July 2016
Mobile sensing for behavioral science: motivation, possibilities, and challenges
66-72 Gower Street | London | United Kingdom
Kaya de Barbaro, Georgia Tech, Dr. de Barbaro's background is in cognitive science, an interdisciplinary field bridging psychology, neuroscience, and computer science. Her research has focused on developmental science, spanning the domains of infant social, cognitive, sensorimotor, and physiological development. Across these domains, she has characterized moment-to-moment multimodal dynamics of infants' bio-behavioral activity—as they look, touch, and express patterns of arousal and affect— using video and specialized sensors in free-flowing interactions.
Developments in mobile sensors open new possibilities for the study of human activity. Motivated by the fields of embodied and distributed cognition, this new behavioral science can move us from sparse and static measures in highly constrained situations to richer multimodal and dynamic trajectories of interactions "in the wild". The talk will outline theoretical foundations for this approach as well as detail some recent projects in this space including a collaboration in progress now at UCL focused on capturing dynamics of early mother-infant activity using baby wearables. We'll finish with a discussion of open challenges, including design and usability of mobile technologies for behavioral science as well as potential benefits and concerns for participants in this new class of studies.