Spread of Disease, Human Behaviour and Smart Phones
Kevin Stanley’s research focuses on using smart phones to revolutionize how human behavior is examined. Collaborating with Nathaniel Osgood, the duo examine the spread of disease and the spread of influence for informing models of disease transmission.
The goal of the research is to change how human behavior is measured and to give it data-centric grounding. They are hoping their research will result in better models for disease preparedness and to improve health policies. Additionally, they are hoping their research will allow health policy decision makers to make more informed decisions regarding whether to take measures such as vaccinations or quarantines during outbreaks.
The second project, involving collaboration with Regan Mandryk, focuses on smartphone applications, specifically “exer-games” that encourage people to get moving. Able to track movement using an accelerometer, Stanley and Mandryk are researching ways that smart phones can replace passive screen time with active screen time. These games require movement to play, similar to the Wii Fit. If gaming continues to be as popular as it currently is, how can researchers encourage healthy lifestyle choices by incorporating games? Stanleys’ research involves coming up with tools to motivate people to strike a balance between gaming and a healthy lifestyle.