Health Risk Assessment

Developing & Pretesting an Innovative Health Risk Assessment

Describing his experience in three Nazi concentration camps, Viktor Frankl wrote: “Woe to him who saw no more sense in his life, no aim, no purpose, and therefore no point in carrying on. He was soon lost.” There is now an increasing evidence supporting the relevance of life purpose. Recent studies have found that “purpose in life” is longitudinally associated with increased life span, reduced heart attack risk (by 30%), reduced Alzheimer’s Disease risk (2.4- fold), and many indicators of well-being. Moreover, a recent experimental study by Nobel prize winner Dr. Elizabeth Blackburn and her colleagues found that an increase in life purpose was related to an increase in telomerase activity, which is essential to the repair of chromosomes.

Our project will create a product using the latest interactive smart phone technology to re-invigorate and scale Frankl’s approach to finding and self-regulating purpose in life. The global challenge of this proposal is to reduce nihilism, or lack of purpose in life, in our world.

Project Team:

Vic Strecher, School of Public Health
Predrag Klasnja, School of Information
David Baker, College of LSA