Healthy Heartbeat – closed



Being healthy is the most important concern in life. Every day of the week, the Public Health Service of Amsterdam (Geneeskundige en Gezondheidsdienst, GGD) strives to help all residents, from children to adults, to grow up and live in the healthiest and safest way possible. The GGD protects, monitors and promotes the population’s well-being by identifying and preventing health risks.

To fulfil this task, it is important to properly monitor the health of all of Amsterdam’s residents. That is why the GGD conducts research into the health, social situation and lifestyle of the city’s population. These data are presented every four years in the form of a public health analysis known as the ‘health monitor’.

The data are collected by means of questionnaires (in writing and online, and sometimes orally). Though a tried and tested method, it is becoming less effective, especially among young adults. There is a diminishing willingness to fill out questionnaires, resulting in gaps in data collection, even though high response rates are essential for the reliability and validity of health studies. So, it is vital for the GGD to increase the participation of certain groups to discover their health status and the factors that (co-) determine this status. Additionally, policy makers are increasingly demanding “today’s figures”, and not just once every four years.

In an era where data are collected in real time via apps, websites, wearables and other media, the key figures of the traditional health monitor seem obsolete as soon as they are published. The representativeness of these figures is under question, since not all population groups are properly accounted for; the 21-40 years age group is especially imprecise. What innovative data collection methods can de GGD use to fulfil its core task?


The challenge

Develop an innovative solution to measure the health of the city and its population. 



  • Good command of the Dutch language is required (by at least one member of the Startup);
  • The product, service or system must assure response, reliability and validity of information for the 21-40 age group, but should also be scalable to cover all population groups;
  • The solution must be sustainable (multiple use, repeatable) and scalable. (Possibly suitable for and usable by other GGD organisations in the Netherlands);
  • The solution should succeed in encouraging population groups traditionally underrepresented in the health monitor (low socio-economic status, young adults – males in particular, and residents with an immigrant background) to participate and to provide data.


Issued by: Geneeskundige en Gezondheidsdienst (GGD)