Life gamified: practices of the quantified self
Self-measurement and tracking have become commonplace practices in recent years. Spurred by movements such as the Quantified Self, an increasing number of people around the world are embracing this culture of self-quantification and monitoring in the spirit of improving their health and wellbeing, and charting their fitness progress. With the explosion of apps and devices enabling the data capturing and evaluation of the individual’s everyday activities, behaviours and habits, we are becoming ever more reliant on such technologies to manage and assess various spheres of our lives including work, leisure, health and even sex. Life itself is increasingly gamified.
In this panel discussion, we will address the rising trend of self-tracking and quantification, examining their applications as well as implications, and highlighting the ways in which the boundaries between work and play, leisure and labour, private and public are becoming increasingly blurred as a result of the infiltration of smart wearable technologies in everyday practices.
Btihaj Ajana is Senior Lecturer in Culture, Digital Humanities and Creative Industries at King’s College London. She is also Associate Professor and Marie Curie Fellow (COFUND) at the Aarhus Institute of Advanced Studies where she is currently undertaking a research project on self-tracking and the Quantified Self culture. She is the author of the book, Governing through Biometrics: The Biopolitics of Identity (2013).
Paolo Ruffino is Lecturer in Media Studies at the University of Lincoln, and is the author and editor of numerous publications, including the book Rethinking Gamification (2014) and a special issue of the peer-reviewed journal GAME on the topic of ‘Video game subcultures’ (2014). He is also a founding member of the media art collective IOCOSE.
Federica Lucivero is a Marie Curie Fellow at the Global Health and Social Medicine department at King’s College London. Her current project investigates the ethical challenges of digital technologies in healthcare, specifically looking at mobile apps and personal health records. She serves as King’s representative in the Working Group on mHealth guidelines at the European Commission.
Maria Chatzichristodoulou (aka Maria X) is Reader in Performance and New Media, and Head of External Development and Enterprise at the School of Arts and Creative Industries, London South Bank University, where she is also leads the BA Theatre Technologies. She also practices as a curator, performer and community organiser in the UK and Greece. She is currently working on the edited collection Live Art in the UK (Bloomsbury Methuen 2017) and the monograph Live Art in Network Cultures (Palgrave Macmillan 2018).