Donna Spruijt-Metz, MFA, PhD
Director, USC mHealth Collaboratory
Dornsife Center for Economic and Social Research, University of California
Donna Spruijt-Metz is Director of the USC mHealth Collaboratory at the University of Southern California’s Center for Economic and Social Research (Co-Director, Bill Swartout), and Professor of Research in Psychology. She also holds a complimentary appointment at the Keck School of Medicine, Department of Preventive Medicine. Her main interests include using mobile technologies to develop data sets that combine sensor and self-report data that is continuous, temporally rich, contextualized. Using this data along with innovative modeling techniques, she wants to develop dynamic, contextualized mathematical models of health-related behavior. She was one of the first to undertake a just-in-time, adaptive intervention (JITAI) in youth, and envisions most or all interventions being JITAI in the future. Her research focuses on childhood obesity and mobile health technologies, including the KNOWME Networks project, that developed a Wireless Body Area Network system to decrease sedentariness and increase physical activity in overweight minority youth using a JITAI. She is PI of Virtual Sprouts, a virtual, multiplatform gardening game designed to change dietary knowledge and behavior and prevent obesity in minority youth. She recently led an NSF/EU/NIH-funded workshop in Brussels on building new computationally-enabled theoretical models to support health behavior change and maintenance. Her work meshes 21st century technologies with transdisciplinary metabolic, behavioral and environmental research in order to facilitate the development of dynamic, personalized, contextualized behavioral interventions that can be adapted on the fly. She has a deep interest in harnessing mobile health and new media modalities to bring researchers and researched systems into interaction, to engage people in their own data, and to bring about lasting change in public health.