Online / 5 & 6 February 2022


Building a consensus meta-data standard for actigraphy and light exposure data

In chronobiology and sleep science, researchers often collect data using research-grade activity trackers called actigraphs, which measure movement and determine rest-activity cycles, and light dosimeters, which measure light exposure. At present, there is no meta-data standard for actigraphy and light exposure data that describe aspects of the data collection, such as device manufacturer, sampling rate, or instructions given to the participant. However, meta-data like those are critical for aggregating data and comparing data collected in different samples or across various research sites. Over the past 1+ year, we have been working on developing a consensus meta-data standard for describing actigraphy and light exposure data. The standard is written in JSON-schema, and is extendable to other time-series modalities (such as temperature). The standard is the joint effort of two teams of researchers volunteering their time. In this talk, I will describe the journey from inception to standard, along with the challenges and barriers encountered.


Manuel Spitschan