Tablet computers are becoming the primary means for young children to go online. However, few studies have examined how young children under 11 perceive and cope with personal data privacy during their interactions with these mobile technologies.
KOALA investigates the impact of personal data collection practices of mobile apps upon the general well-being of young children aged 6-10, by working closely with children, and their parents and educators.

Research Interests

  • Children's privacy mental model

  • Impact on children's digital well-being

  • Responsible age-appropriate design

Latest news

New (Oct'21) Invited to present at Cloudera's panel about Data Literacy for Girls for the International Day for the Girl (Video upcoming)

New (Oct'21) Invited to present at 5Rights Roundtable on "Addressing the problems and realising the benefits of processing children’s education data"

New (Sep'21) Joining IEEE's Trustworthy Children's Tech Case Studies Expert Group

New (Sep'21) Launch AI for Family web page and blog

New (Aug'21) Tiffany's paper about current parental control apps' limitations has been accepted by CSCW. Read our pre-print at Oxford Research Archive [PDF]

New (Jul'21) Welcome our summer intern on board for KOALA's COVID Rebuild Fund

New (Apr'21) KOALA received Oxford University's COVID Rebuild Fund

New (Apr'21) Please check out Ani's CHI presentation video about Children's App Developers' Current Value and Design Choices [YouTube][PDF]

New Invited Expert at the Online Harm Initiative (March 2021;18 months duration)

New Invited seminar at Royal Holloway ISG Seminar (March 2021)

New DPhils Tiffany and Ani passed their First-Year Transfer (January 2021)

New Our paper of "Money makes the world go around”: Identifying Barriers to Better Privacy in Children’s Apps From Developers’ Perspective" has been accepted by CHI'2022.

New Our joint paper of "It's your personal information. It's your life." Young People's views of personal data use by online technology" has been accepted by IDC'2020.

New Our paper on KOALA has been accepted by Digitising Early Childhood Conference in Milan (postponed).

New Our study on "Understanding Value and Design Choices Made by Android Family App Developers" is accepted at CHI LBW 2020 (postponed).

New What do Chinese parents say about their children's online safety? A blog post at parenting4digitalfuture (Jan 2020)

New Dr Zhao is now the UK regional chapter leader for Women in AI Ethics (Dec 2019)

New Super cool to be part of the new IEEE Working Group on developing a standard around Terms & Conditions (T&Cs) for online services for children! Thanks for having me! (Nov 2019)

New Dr Zhao was an invited expert at the Council of Europe's Data Rights consultation meeting (Strasbourg) to talk about Children's Data (Nov 2019)

New Proud to be part of the I'm a Researcher 2019 between 11-22 November 2019.

New Excited to be part of Oxford CS's Taster Session! (Nov 2019)

New KOALA and KOALA Hero were well presented at the Oxford Idea Festival 2019. (Oct 2019)

New Dr Zhao was an invited expert at the Council of Europe's Data Rights consultation meeting to talk about Children's Data. (Sep 2019)

New Dr Zhao talked about How parents should stop monitoring their children, at AI@Oxford 2019. The talk script can be found here (Sep 2019)

New KOALA has been fortunate enough to pay a visit to primary school students in China this summer, see slides by Tiffany (August 2019)

New We provided our response to CEDI's Call for Evidence for its Review of Online Targeting (June 2019)

New Our KOALA project has been cited by ICO's Children Online Data Privacy Project myprivacy.uk (June 2019)

New Our latest project report about Chinese parents' concern about their children's online privacy [pdf] and [CN] (June 2019) 

New KOALA was present at the Oxford Impact Accelerate Conference [pdf] (May 2019)

New We provided our response to ICO's latest draft of Code of Age-Appropriate Design (May 2019)

New KOALA is going to be present at CHI 2019 [pdf][video] [presesenation] (Apr 2019) 


The KOALA project is funded by EPSRC Impact Acceleration Account Award, under the grant number of EP/R511742/1.