This week, PhD student Elizabeth Murnane will be sharing work from her project "Social (Media) Jet Lag: how usage of socio-computational technology modulates and reflects circadian rhythms".

Abstract: By nature, we are circadian creatures whose bodies’ biological clocks drive numerous physiological, mental, and behavioral rhythms. At the same time, we are social beings. Accordingly, our internal circadian preferences experience interference from externally determined factors such as work schedules and social engagements. Digital connectivity introduces additional social constraints that further misalign our individual body clocks. Misalignment between biological and social time causes "social jet lag", which has serious physical and mental health consequences. Misalignment particularly impacts the circadian sleep process.

In this talk, I'll describe a 3-phase study with 9 participants undertaken to explore how circadian rhythms and usage patterns of social-computational systems interact. Building on the study's findings that technology usage both modulates and reflects circadian rhythms, I'll discuss our attempts to leverage socially-sensed data to detect sleep-related behaviors and disruptions as well as variations in attention, cognitive performance, and mood following (in)adequate sleep. I'll conclude with recommendations for designing "circadian-aware" technologies attuned to our innate biological preferences.

All are welcome! Snacks from Manndible.