World Internet Project and Health

June 30, 2009

I’m so excited about World Internet Project 2009 Macao (July 8 – 10) where I’m presenting a paper done with Dra. Rita Espanha entitled Health and the Internet: Autonomy of the User.


Information access and distribution are growing and the ways in which this information and knowledge democratisation occurs are many, scattered and diverse. Individual health, and its daily management, never involved as much information as nowadays.

The aims of this paper are: to identify and characterise the role of daily information and communication practices for health individual management in Portugal and to identify and characterise some trends on a global scale of the Internet use for health purpose.

Considering all Internet activities within WIP database 2007, cluster analysis was carried out to define an e-readiness index to the Network Society. Citizens who have more probability to be in worse health status due to their age are those who have also more probability to be less e-readiness or even dropped out of the Internet.

Parallel to the “informed patient” concept, we must consider also in our approaches the “generation divide” and the “e-readiness divide” concepts associated with health.

The World Internet Project (WIP) is a major, international, collaborative project looking at the social, political and economic impact of the Internet and other new technologies. Conceived as the study of the Internet that should have been conducted of television in its early days, the WIP believes that the Internet’s influence will ultimately be far greater than television. Whereas television has mostly been about entertainment, the Internet has the potential to transform how the world plays, works and learns… +info

I’m working on the presentation but after the meeting it will be uploaded. Finally I would like to thank Imma Tubella, Carlos Tabernero and specially Joan Torrent, colleagues from Internet Interdisciplinary Institute (IN3) at Open University of Catalonia, for their support to travel to Macao.