Data collection with wearables, apps and sensors

Join us for this survey methods webinar, organised by City, University of London, European Social Survey and the National Centre for Social Research.
  • Event time:
    11th October 2023 12:00 – 13:00
  • Format:

The proliferation of mobile and wearable technology provides new opportunities for behavioural and social researchers.

Using wearables, apps and sensors allows for the collection of observational data (e.g., on location and movement, physical activity, social interactions, mobile browsing history and app usage) at high intervals and in real time.

These data can augment or replace self-reports in surveys.

However, implementing data collection using these new technologies poses multiple challenges, among others related to participant selectivity, (non)willingness to provide the data, as well as ethics and privacy.

In addition, data from wearables, apps and sensors is not free from error and specific skills are required to handle and analyse these data.

This webinar will provide an overview of the currently available technology and review how they can be implemented in surveys.


  • Florian Keusch
    Professor of Social Data Science and Methodology University of Mannheim
    Florian Keusch is Professor of Social Data Science and Methodology in the Department of Sociology at the University of Mannheim and Adjunct Research Professor in the Joint Program in Survey Methodology (JPSM) at the University of Maryland. In his research, he assesses the quality of modern methods of collecting data for the behavioural and social sciences. In particular, he is interested in how to jointly collect self-reports (usually via (mobile) web surveys) and passive measurement from smartphone and wearable sensors, online and device log files, Internet search queries and other digital traces to better study research questions on migration, employment and inequality.