November 10, 2020

Facebook announces winners of the People’s Expectations and Experiences with Digital Privacy research awards

By: Meta Research

Facebook is committed to honoring people’s privacy in our products, policies, and services. We serve a diverse global community of users, and we need to understand people’s unique privacy needs around the world. This is why we launched a request for research proposals in August to help broaden and deepen our collective knowledge of global privacy expectations and experiences. After a thorough review process, we’ve selected the following as recipients of these awards.


“I am thrilled by the quality of the proposed work we received in our latest funding opportunity about users’ privacy expectations and experiences,” says Head of Facebook Privacy Research Liz Keneski. “I look forward to seeing the results of these carefully selected funded studies. I expect these projects to have an impact on inclusive privacy at Facebook and in the tech industry at large, including for vulnerable populations in the diverse communities that we serve — and on the ways we measure and understand people’s privacy expectations reliably.”

We sought applications from across the social sciences and technical disciplines, with particular interest in (1) improving understanding of users’ privacy attitudes, concerns, preferences, needs, behaviors, and outcomes, and (2) novel interventions for digital transparency and control that are meaningful for diverse populations, context, and data types.

“We received an impressive 147 proposals from 34 countries and 120 universities,” says Sharon Ayalde, Facebook Research Program Manager. “This was our first year offering funding opportunities in the privacy research space. We look forward to continuing these efforts into 2021 and to strengthening our collaborations with key experts globally.”

Thank you to everyone who took the time to submit a proposal, and congratulations to the winners. Recipients of our two earlier privacy research award opportunities were announced in May.

Research award recipients

Principal investigators are listed first unless otherwise noted.

Deploying visual interventions for users of varying digital literacy levels
Xinru Page (Brigham Young University), Brian Smith (Brigham Young University), Mainack Mondal (India Institute of Technology, Kharagpur), Norman Makoto Su (Indiana University Bloomington)

Empowering under-resourced parents in teens’ social media privacy education
Natalie Bazarova, Dan Cosley, Ellen Wenting Zou, Leslie Park, Martha Brandt (Cornell University)

Helping people manage privacy settings using social influences
Jason Hong, Laura Dabbish (Carnegie Mellon University)

Measuring privacy across cultural, political, and expressive contexts
Dmitry Epstein (The Hebrew University of Jerusalem), Aysenur Dal (Bilkent University), Elizabeth Stoycheff (Wayne State University), Erik Nisbet (Northwestern University), Kelly Quinn (University of Illinois Chicago), Olga Kamenchuk (Northwestern University), Thorsten Faas (Free University of Berlin)

Privacy personas in the MENA region: A large-scale analysis of 21 countries
Bernard J. Jansen (Hamad Bin Khalifa University), Joni Salminen (Qatar Computing Research Institute), Justin D. Martin (Northwestern University in Qatar), Kareem Darwish (Qatar Computing Research Institute), Lene Nielsen (IT University of Copenhagen), Soon-gyo Jung (Qatar Computing Research Institute), Yin (David) Yang (Hamad Bin Khalifa University)


Bridging the urban-rural gap in digital privacy autonomy among older adults
Kaileigh Byrne, Bart Knijnenburg (Clemson University)

Digital afterlife and the displaced: Challenges and practices among Rohingyas
Faheem Hussain, Md. Arifur Rahman (Arizona State University)

Digital privacy attitudes and misperceptions among key stakeholders
Joseph Turow Yphtach Lelkes (University of Pennsylvania)

Digital privacy in a connected world — awareness and expectations of children
Serdar Abaci (University of Edinburgh)

Digital privacy rights and government data collection during COVID-19
Ariadne Vromen, Francesco Bailo, Kimberlee Weatherall (Australian National University)

Informed consent: Conditions of effective consent to privacy messages
Glenna Read, Jonathan Peters (University of Georgia)

Managing your personal “data bank”
Aija E. Leiponen, Joy Z. Wu (Cornell University)

Privacy design for vulnerable and digitally low-literate populations
Maryam Mustafa, Mobin Javed (Lahore University of Management Sciences)

Understanding folk theories of privacy
Jeff Hancock, Xun “Sunny” Liu (Stanford University)

For more information about topics of interest, eligibility, and requirements, visit the award page. To receive updates on new research award opportunities, subscribe to our email newsletter.