dr. AF (Ayla) Schwarz

dr. AF (Ayla) Schwarz

Postdoctoral researcher and lecturer

Dr. Ayla Schwarz is postdoc researcher at the chair group Consumption and Healthy Lifestyles. She completed her Bachelor and Master studies (2011-2016) in Applied Communication Sciences at Wageningen University. At Ghent University, Ayla completed her PhD dissertation (2019) on user engagement in serious games to promote physical activity among adolescents. Since 2019 Ayla engages in education, project coordination and research activities at Consumption and Healthy Lifestyles. Ayla is part as a supporting coordinator of the investment theme 'Protein Transition' (2019-2022), and is involved in a number of courses relating to public health. Ayla's research focusses on the intersection of behavioral change and technology and is designing, optimizing, and evaluating digital health interventions, including apps, games, and different forms of gamification. In particular, Ayla is interested in promoting user engagement in digital health interventions, with a special focus on vulnerable youth and physical activity. 


Ayla is currently involved in the Vital@2040 project, a project by the Vitality Academy and the EWUU alliance. Ayla's research line is represented in the sub project mVital@2040:

The overall aim of mVital@2040 is to investigate the role of mHealth that aims to promote informal physical activity in the neighborhood among youth (10-14 years old), living in low income neighborhoods.

The first objective is to investigate how mHealth interventions that aim to promote informal physical activity among youth (10-14 years old) in low-income neighborhoods can be structurally implemented for youth and intermediaries in the neighborhood setting.
The second objective is to investigate how a mHealth intervention that aims to promote informal physical activity in the neighborhood can be further designed for youth (10-14 years old) living in low income neighborhoods and intermediaries in an engaging way.

Ayla works together with industry partners, public organizations, citizens, and researchers.