The 2015 Quantified Self Public Health Symposium

Data collected in the ordinary course of life holds clues about some of our most pressing questions related to human health and wellbeing. The potential value of this data dwarfs that of conventional health records. Rich personal data streams offer new ways to measure the effects of today’s practices. They are also a source of new ideas. But significant barriers stand in our way as we try to use our personal data for individual and public benefit. Some of these barriers are technical. Others are legal, commercial, economic, and cultural. But none will be solved unless the value of access to data is more widely recognized, giving rise to the kind of advocacy that leads to change.

For the last eight years we’ve been organizing meetings where people who want to learn about themselves using data can share their discoveries and techniques. Today there are over 100 Quantified Self groups around the world. Two years ago, with support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, we took another step. Our “QS Public Health Symposium” brings together scientific researchers, policymakers, pioneering users, and the business and technical leadership from the companies that make and sell self-tracking tools. Our common goal is to advance the cause of access to data for personal and public benefit. Last May, the second annual QS Public Health meeting took place at the University of California, San Diego. Today, we’re excited to post all of the talks from that meeting.

If you’re inspired by what you see and want to help us raise the conversation surrounding personal data access we invite you to get in touch. If you have a story about accessing your own data for your own benefit — positive or negative, we’d like to hear it.

Click the images below to learn more about the talks and watch the video.

Quantified Self Labs is dedicated to sharing stories and insights about the role of data access for personal and public health. We invite you to follow along on and @quantifiedself. If you have an interest in joining our growing community and attending the 2016 Quantified Self Public Health Symposium please get in touch.