School of Computer Science

Who Needs a Doctor Anymore? Risks and Promise of Mobile Health Apps

Next week sees Dr Alan Chamberlain from the School of Computer Science join a panel of experts at Mobile HCI to discuss issues pertaining to mobile technology and health.

Dr Chamberlain said, “It’s great to be asked to sit on a panel with experts from Microsoft and IBM. Computer Science at the University of Nottingham has been one of the school's at the forefront of developing mobile technologies for many years, but the research that we carry out is more than just about developing hardware and software. It’s important to understand the social dimensions of such technologies; issues that relate to trust, privacy and the use of personal data."

Who Needs a Doctor Anymore?

Risks and Promise of Mobile Health Apps

Abstract: Personal health monitoring is a hot topic. With bracelets and dongles, we keep track of our heart rate, exercising, sleep, and more. We have become our own doctors and coaches. Improving citizens' health brings the society significant savings and more efficient services, besides healthier citizens. Health data also has important value beyond healthcare, e.g. in insurance and advertising. Smart phones and associated cloud services are the key platform for personal health monitoring. Apps and services for this purpose proliferate. Can we trust their automated analysis functions? Risks inevitably rise. Misplaced sensitive data can be embarrassing, costly and dangerous. Data mining may uncover identifiable information from seemingly anonymous data. Questions of system architectures, security approaches and data ownership arise. How to extract maximal benefits from health data with minimal risks? Field experiments are underway - in your pockets.

The panel is led by: Pertti Huuskonen, Bsoniq Ltd, Finland ( )


  • Alan Chamberlain, University of Nottingham, UK
  • Jani Mäntyjärvi, VTT Finland's Technical Research Center, Finland
  • Natasa Milic-Frayling, Microsoft Research, UK
  • Stina Nylander, SICS Swedish ICT, Sweden
  • Minna Pikkarainen, Centre for Health and Technology, University of Oulu, Finland
  • Henrik Sjöstrand, IBM, Sweden

 Link to Panel page:

Mobile HCI brings together people from diverse areas which provides a multidisciplinary forum for academics, hardware and software developers, designers and practitioners to discuss the challenges and potential solutions for effective interaction with and through mobile devices, applications, and services. MobileHCI maintains a small number of tracks along with a wide range of other program aspects to encourage the exchange of research results, ideas and future research endeavors.


Posted on Friday 21st August 2015

School of Computer Science

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