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Resilient employees and teams are better able to cope with, and overcome exposure to psychosocial and physical word demands, both in the short term and in the longer term. Being able to support individuals and teams to become more resilient so they bounce-back from set-backs and maintain high performance and health is a valuable asset for organisations. The developments in (mobile) technology offer opportunities to strengthen the resilience of employees and organizations. One of the advantages of mobile technology is the ability to continuously and unobtrusively self-track user’s behaviour, physiological data, and feelings using, for example, smartphone and wearable sensors.
The research program Human Resilience develops the knowledge that is still needed to be able to strengthen employee resilience using wearable technology. The program focuses on:
1. Development of a multidimensional, predictive, generic model of human resilience, integrating trait and state level psychological, physiological, and social factors;
2. User-friendly and valid measurement of individual level resilience factors using wearable technology;
3. Development of algorithms for personalized and predictive resilience feedback;
4. Development of a feedback platform for individual level and organizational level feedback, including an organizational intervention framework;
These developments are integrated in a prototype of a wearable resilience application.
The project uses a combination of research approaches, varying from systematic literature reviews to controlled laboratory experiments, and large scale field studies. Field studies have been conducted in the top sports domain (the national Korfbal team), and with the Dutch Police. In these field studies, groups of employees use the wearable resilience application for periods of 4 weeks. This prototype collects psychosocial and physiological data, relevant for stress and resilience. Based on these data the employee receives feedback about his or her resilience, and ways to improve it. The data collected in these field studies are used for refining the models of resilience developed in this project, and gaining more insight in the needs of the users (employees and organisations).
The project is ongoing, but it has already delivered valuable knowledge about integrative modelling of psychosocial and psychophysiological trait and state level data, the usability of psychophysiological measurements using wearable wristband sensor systems, and the relative relevance of different resources for resilience in different work domains. These results are being disseminated via articles in peer-reviewed journals, scientific conferences, and professional journals. In addition, the project delivers useful insights in ways to improve employee resilience using wearable technology.