Nada Akrouh

Qualitative Big Data Analysis using Citizen Science and AI: unlocking experiential knowledge for healthcare

Erasmus University Rotterdam, Erasmus School of Health Policy & Management, Department Health Care Governance,

Supervisors: Dr. Hester van de Bovenkamp, Dr. Iris Wallenburg & Dr. Rik Wehrens


I started my studies in Health Policy & Management at the Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR). Following my aspiration to know more about the functioning of health care systems using a multi-disciplinary approach I choose to continue my studies with the Master Health Economics, Policy & Law at the Erasmus University Rotterdam. During my studies I worked as a student assistant at Erasmus School of Health Policy & Management (ESHPM), where I was responsible for the website management of For my master thesis I conducted qualitative research to understand the organisation of integrated care for children and adolescents with traumatic brain injury from the perspective of patients, professionals and policy.

Summary PhD Project

This PhD research focuses on how citizen science can play a role in the development and use of AI and Big Data in healthcare. I will explore the various roles of citizens and patients in the application of AI, focusing in particular on the various knowledges they produce and the infrastructures through which they can be aligned. In my PhD I will experiment with new forms of data analysis in which qualitative methods are combined with Big Data and AI using Citizen Science. The case studies will be selected from a large collection of written patient stories. This research is multifaceted and thereby includes different goals. A first goal of this research is to identify ways to productively combine citizen science methods with qualitative methods and computational analyses. Through these methods we will analyze the epistemic status of the extracted experiential knowledge in relation to other forms of knowledge and understanding. Moreover, this research will analyze the Dutch institutional structures for possibilities and limitations for citizens and patients to shape citizen science in health care.