HCR.20.004 – Wearables in Practice

Route: Health care research, sickness prevention and treatment

Cluster question: 093 How can we promote innovativeness, quality, and accessibility in institutionalised and informal forms of care?

Wearable (bio)sensor technology is garnering substantial societal and scientific interest due to its potential to provide continuous, real-time information on ongoing psychophysiological inference of a person’s mental state and behaviour. Across many forensic and psychiatric settings an increasing number, but often unconnected, research projects are carried out in the Netherlands to examine the potential value of wearable technology with integrated (bio)sensors for bodily self-awareness, self-regulation, and behavior modification. These projects focus on pattern recognition in prolonged and data-intense recordings from individual participants and providing them with actionable (bio)feedback. This requires many new skills of the applied researchers and professionals working in these settings. Many professionals in forensic and psychiatric care are exploring the options of monitoring and giving feedback with wearables outside of the context of (subsidized) research projects, but have doubts on how to interpret and handle the large amount of data that these new technologies produce. In some cases, they also feel unsure about the reliability and validity of the technology they are using. In parallel, their academic colleagues in the technical and behavioural sciences experience rapid increases in technological and analytical possibilities for wearable data collection but lack the ‘realistic data’ and guidance from end-users to test the usability and clinical utility and optimize wearable-hardware, pattern recognition and predictive modelling. The collaborative Wearables in Practice (WIP) consortium (http://wearablesinpractice.com/) was established in 2016 to bridge this gap between the academic and professional worlds. The aim of the WIP consortium is to provide a solid scientific basis for working with wearables, while maintaining the focus on their applied use and implementation, i.e. to actually bring the ‘Wearables Into Practice’.


(forensic) psychiatry, aggressive and violent behavior, bio- cueing, biofeedback, bodily self-awareness, chronic stress and burnout, self-control, self-regulation, Wearable technology

Other organisations

De Bascule, De Waag, Fivoor, FPC Gent and Antwerpen, Ipse de Bruggen, Mentech, Ministry of Safety and Justice Division of Forensic Care, Pluryn-Intermetzo, Stevig Dichterbij, Trajectum, Transfore


Organisation University of Twente (UT)
Name Dr. M.L. (Matthijs) Noordzij
E-mail m.l.noordzij@utwente.nl
Website https://people.utwente.nl/m.l.noordzij