Ask The Experts: Wearables

Leaders in the field are here to answer your questions

19 May 2015

While wearable gadgets have become a popular trend in recent years, they still have a long way to go. The Institute’s June special report describes what is needed to make wearables more accurate, seamless, and better equipped to monitor vital signs—not to mention more enjoyable to use. It also explores some of the career opportunities available for engineers to break into the field.

Here to answer your questions about wearables are four leading experts. To participate, submit your questions in the comments section below or tweet them to us @IEEEInstitute. A selection of questions and answers will be published on our site on 30 June.


Elizabeth Churchill is a specialist in user experience with a background in experimental psychology. She is researching how to go beyond the data wearables gather to motivate people on a subconscious level to take care of their health. Churchill held a number of related positions in Silicon Valley, including director of human computer interaction at eBay Research Labs, principal research scientist and founder of the Internet Experiences Group at Yahoo! Research, and senior research scientist at the Palo Alto Research Center. She is a coauthor of Designing With Data, which will be published later this year. Churchill is also the coauthor of “Wellth Creation: Using Computer Science to Support Proactive Health,” published last November in IEEE’s Computer magazine.


IEEE Member M.C. Schraefel is the other coauthor of Wellth.  “She is a professor of computer science and human performance at the University of Southampton, in England, and founder of the school’s Human Systems Interaction Design Lab with the mission to develop technology that helps improve quality of life. She is also a visiting scientist for the Decentralized Information Group  at MIT. Outside of her teaching role, Schraefel is certified in strength and conditioning, nutrition, and neural movement coaching. Her research has been driven by her interest in how health and wellness and the brain are integrated. Her work in this area has been supported in part by Microsoft Research.


IEEE Senior Member Kevin Curran is an assistant professor in computer science at Ulster University, in Northern Ireland. He has published more than 800 articles on computer networking and systems, and his expertise is in location positioning within indoor environments, pervasive computing, and Internet security. He is a regular contributor to BBC Radio and other media outlets on the topics of computing and security issues. Curran is also an IEEE technical expert. (View this video on his talk about wearable trends that improve daily life at Mobile World Congress, which was held in Barcelona in March.)


Jesse Jur is an assistant professor of textile engineering, chemistry, and science at North Carolina State University, in Raleigh. He is the lead scientist of the university’s Nano-extended Textiles Research Group, which is focused on leveraging methods in nanotechnology to develop textile-inspired electronic devices. He is also a researcher for the U.S. National Science Foundation Nanosystems Engineering Research Center for Advanced Self-Powered Systems of Integrated Sensors and Technologies, better known as ASSIST. Jur coauthored “Flexible Technologies for Self-Powered Wearable Health and Environmental Sensing,” published in April in Proceedings of the IEEE.

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