New article – Shared motivations, goals and values in the practice of personal science: a community perspective on self-tracking for empirical knowledge

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Some individuals do not limit their self-tracking efforts to passively collecting and observing gathered data about themselves, but rather develop it into forms of self-research and self-experimentation, also called “personal science”. This type of N-of-1 research is relevant to the fields of personal informatics, patient-led research and social studies of science, but as a knowledge generation practice is still poorly understood. To fill this gap, we conducted 22 semi-structured interviews to investigate the intrinsic and extrinsic motivations of individuals engaging in personal science activities, as well as shared goals and values present in self-research communities. Our analysis is based on […]

New article – Manifesto sprint on biocultural diversity: an experimental approach to knowledge co-creation, discourse design and collaborative writing

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New methodological and co-creation approaches are needed in Digital Humanities (DH) for cross-disciplinary collaboration oriented to sustainability. More specifically—in the context of Environmental Humanities and regarding biocultural diversity—a key challenge is to set effective and engaging ways of rapid knowledge generation for public awareness and policy-making. According to the 2019 United Nations report on biodiversity, the world will lose one million species in the upcoming years. In parallel, it is acknowledged that the degradation of biological diversity also threatens cultural and linguistic diversity, as declared by UNESCO. In an attempt to contribute to knowledge safeguarding this diversity, a hybrid approach […]

New article – Using an individual-centered approach to gain insights from wearable data in the Quantified Flu platform: netnography study

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Background: Wearables have been used widely for monitoring health in general, and recent research results show that they can be used to predict infections based on physiological symptoms. To date, evidence has been generated in large, population-based settings. In contrast, the Quantified Self and Personal Science communities are composed of people who are interested in learning about themselves individually by using their own data, which are often gathered via wearable devices. Objective: This study aims to explore how a cocreation process involving a heterogeneous community of personal science practitioners can develop a collective self-tracking system for monitoring symptoms of infection […]

A digital minimalism self-intervention

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Inspired by the concepts of self-experimentation and quantified self, some time ago I decided to re-try something that I had attempted in the past but in a very piecemeal way: put my smartphone aside and instead use a Nokia feature phone or “dumbphone”. Why do something like that? First of all, I must clarify that it is not a question of neo-luddite philosophy or aspiring to a way of life without technology. It is clear that our current lifestyle in “developed” societies cannot be separated from digital tools. And among these disruptive tools, the smartphone is the one that has […]

Personal science, community learning and the quantified self – Interview with Gary Wolf

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Text originally published at Peer-Produced Research Lab on 18/05/2021 Gary Wolf, journalist, researcher and contributing editor at Wired magazine since its beginnings, is the co-founder of Quantified Self, an international community of users and makers of self-tracking tools who share an interest in self-experimentation and “self-knowledge through numbers”. Gary is also one of the board directors of the Open Humans Foundation, and active contributor of the Open Humans self-research community. We interviewed Gary during a data collection process for a study on motivations, learnings and peer support in self-research communities (more info here), and since Gary gave permission to use his non-anonymized data (“I’m a journalist!”) we reproduce […]

Dispositivos de información en la plaza (en el aniversario del 15M)

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Con motivo de celebración del décimo aniversario del 15M recupero algo que escribí cuando me pasé por la plaça Catalunya en repetidas ocasiones y me mezclé con lo que estaba pasando, y sobre todo me llamó mucho la atención cómo se presentaban y organizaban diferentes interacciones “asíncronas” de participación. Para el análisis en aquel momento me basé en fotografías de cada uno de los dispositivos físicos de información que se desplegaron, buscando su analogía con canales y herramientas digitales de aquel entonces. Aquí lo dejo, sin “retoques” a posteriori ;), como una especie supongo de homenaje nostálgico y como un […]

New article – Data for sustainable platform economy: connections between platform models and Sustainable Development Goals

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In recent years, the platform economy has been recognised by researchers and governments around the world for its potential to contribute to the sustainable development of society. Yet, platform economy cases such as Uber, Airbnb, and Deliveroo have created a huge controversy over their socioeconomic impact, while other alternative models have been associated with a new form of cooperativism. In parallel, the United Nations are advocating global sustainable development by promoting Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), considering elements such as decent work, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, and fostering innovation. In any case, the SDGs have been also criticised for the […]

New book chapter – Participation and co-creation in citizen science

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Citizen science practices have different frames to general scientific research – the adoption of participatory methods in research design has long been pursued in citizen science projects. The citizen science research design process should be inclusive, flexible, and adaptive in all its stages, from research question formulation to evidence-based collective results. Some citizen science initiatives adopt strategies that include co-creation techniques and methodologies from a wide variety of disciplines and practices. In this sense, the will to collaborate between researchers and other stakeholders is not new. It is traditionally found in public participation in science, including participatory action research (PAR) […]

New article – Co-creation applied to public policy: a case study on collaborative policies for the platform economy in the city of Barcelona

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This paper addresses how far co-creation methodologies can be applied to policy-making innovation in the platform economy. The driving question is how co-creation collaboration-based policy-making can increase diversity and strengthen the participation of actors. The analysis is based on a three-year case study on the platform economy in Barcelona, describing how co-creation dynamics contributed to the participatory definition of local public policies and agenda. The methodology is based on participatory design techniques, involving participant observation and content analysis. Results indicate that co-creation can increase participation diversity aligning academic, economic, and social viewpoints in policy innovation from a quadruple helix perspective. […]

Crowdfunding and SDGs open data to accelerate knowledge about sustainability and citizen participation

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Text originally published with Mayo Fuster for Springer Nature on 30/04/2020 In a still early context of releasing open research data in the Social Sciences, we present the results of a pioneering initiative that unites action research and open knowledge, developed in collaboration between the Dimmons research group of the Universitat Oberta de Catalunya and the Goteo civic crowdfunding initiative. It consists in a detailed dataset and its corresponding data descriptor in Scientific Data, containing various statistical details on 487 campaigns on Goteo.org that followed various crowdfunding modalities, in parallel to its relationship with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the United Nations. For this, through a process […]