Curtin University Uyghur, Tibetan facial recognition study

September 2021

A research study by a professor at Curtin University, Australia, on 'Chinese ethnical groups' that used facial recognition to identify Uyghurs, Tibetans and Koreans has been found to have breached the university's ethics standards.

Wanquan Liu published the study, which he co-authored with three other academics at Chinese universities and was co-funded by the Chinese government, without the consent of its subjects, and without the university's knowledge.

Liu has resigned, and moved to a university in China. The university is overhauling its informal academic research approval procedures and has asked publisher Wiley to retract the study.

Operator: Wanquan Liu; Cunrui Wang; Qingling Zhan; Yu Li; Lixin Miao
Wanquan Liu; Cunrui Wang; Qingling Zhan; Yu Liu; Lixin Miao
Country: Australia, China
Purpose: Identify Uyghur & Tibetan minorities
Technology: Facial recognition
Issue: Ethics; Privacy; Surveillance
Transparency: Governance; Privacy