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Connect2SEA Grant

SiRC is involved with a CONNECT2SEA Grant, with a project on the role of partner support in mHealth for Type II Diabetes.

The project will initiate cooperation in the field of mHealth research for chronic diseases by bringing together proposed scholars working in the research area of mobile communication, health communication, and mobile health interventions.

A 3-day workshop will be held at the Ludwig-Maximilians University in Munich (Germany) in fall 2014 (Sept/Oct 2014). Researchers from SEA will be invited to come to Europe for this initial workshop. Within 3 days, all researchers will come together to discuss (1) the study design and procedure for a study on the role of partner support in mHealth interventions for chronic disease management, (2) a joint panel proposal for the Annual Conference 2015 of the International Communication Association, (3) a proposal for an mHealth diabetes research project with European Union funding (HORIZON 2020), and (4) other future cooperations in the field of mHealth for disease management. Regarding these four aspects for cooperation, the objectives of the workshop in Munich are the followng:

  1. Discuss and decide on a final study design for research on the role of partner support in mHealth interventions for chronic disease management. The objectives are to study the efficacy of mobile-based data collection and interventions designed to improve diabetes management among type-2 diabetic patients by involving their strong-tie connections (usually a partner). Diabetes management will be measured in clinical outcomes (e.g., HbA1c blood glucose levels) and in behavioral change (e.g., reported medication adherence, regular blood glucose testing, regular clinical check-ups, following recommendations for nutrition and exercise). In the first phase qualitative focus groups with diabetics and their strong-tie partners should be conducted in order to understand what types of mobile-based interventions are preferred. In a following second phase, an experiment will follow using randomized assignment to allocate diabetics and their strong-tie partners to control and treatment conditions.

  2. Based on the first joint study and various other research projects, a panel proposal for the Annual Conference 2015 of the International Comm. Ass. will be developed, to hand in the proposal after the workshop in November 2014. A successful panel proposal will provide the opportunity for a second meeting of the research group in Spring 2015 at the ICA Annual Conference (21-25th of May, 2015; see http://www.icahdq.org/conf/past_future.asp).

  3. A proposal for EU funding on a larger basis will be discussed, and a draft for an application will be worked out at the workshop. A cooperation for EU funding will include a larger number of cooperating researchers. Looking for potential partners will be part of the workshop. Furthermore, requirements for EU funding will be looked at in detail at the workshop.

  4. A discussion of other future cooperations will allow to find overlapping research topics that could be interesting for future cooperations between two or more scholars.

The workshop in Munich will be followed by a meeting of all collaborating researchers at the Annual Conference 2015 of the International Communication Association (ICA) in San Juan (Puerto Rico) in May 2015. The meeting at the ICA will include a 75 minutes research panel and a 3-hours meeting of the collaborating SEA and EU participants.