What does theWeP study?

Field research is one of the most important tools for learning more about behaviour, physiology and genetics of plants and animals. theWeP draws on this principle to widen research into the biology of humans. The results from WeP-studies will deliver important insights for all aspects of our life, leading eventually to a better understanding of healthy lifestyles and optimal quality of life, and therefore ways to avoid illness. Surprisingly, we still know relatively little about the basic requirements that we need as biological beings, to healthy living. How much light do we need, how much movement and exercise, how much to eat? Do our needs change through the day, season or lifetime, and will this be different if one lives near the equator or towards the poles? How dependent is our behaviour, our physiology and the development of illness on where and how we live? What do humans need so that they can be as happy with their work as with their free time? These are just a small collection from many open questions for which theWeP is seeking answers. 

The WeP-Strategy

Our limited knowledge concerning the biology of humans is mostly due to the fact that most studies can research only small numbers of people. But even if hundreds or thousands of Germans, Japanese or Americans were studied, the results would still only reflect region-specific human behaviour. In addition, many studies from different parts of the world are not readily comparable due to differences in methods. The goal of theWeP planners is that each of the questions on the various WeP-projects will be answered by thousands of people across every land and culture. By standardising methods, comparisons between studies will be possible. 
All WeP projects depend purely on voluntary respondents. Each of these participants receives a personalized response, indicating how they compare with the general population world wide. Through this feedback system, people all around the world stand to learn more about the behaviour and physiology of man. 
The strategy of theWeP has several levels. The first level uses internet-supported questionnaires trying to reach as many people form as many regions as possible. At another level of theWeP, one has the opportunity to record daily behaviour in a secure, electronic diary. Finally, some subjects may have the possibility to directly measure behavioural parameters by wearing small non-invasive devices to record activity, for example, for a couple of weeks. 

The WeP promise

With theWeP, we will create a understanding of human behaviour and physiology in general and NOT a 'transparent individual'. All results from individuals are held in the strictest of confidence. Only the results of the general population will be published/revealed, and only after applications of the strictest of scientific analysis. No details that you provide as a volunteer will be revealed to third parties, nor can they be associated in any way with you personally. At no point will theWeP database be shared with third parties, except for academic researchers who will have access to anonymous data following an application procedure whereby their scientific question is laid out. Scientists working with public academic institutions can initiate their own project using the theWeP’s infrastructure. theWeP has no commercial motivation or interests, serving exclusively basic research. WeP-projects must be approved by ethics commissions and a dedicated unit of theWeP serves to guarantee security of the data. Without a strong investment into the trust of those who provide information for the project, theWeP would have no chance to live. 

theWeP initiators

Ludwig-Maximilian-University München, D (WeP Coordinator) 
University of Groningen, NL 
Oxford University, UK 
University of the Philippines, Diliman

Our references

Here you can find our publications 


Want to Participate?
Are you interested in running your study via theWeP? Then just email us