Following a competitive application process, ACCAN is pleased to announce the successful Grants for 2020.

This year’s projects will explore a range of issues relevant to communications consumers, including how to protect children’s privacy when using apps, regional and rural consumers’ understanding of smart technologies, and the accessibility of video on demand services, among others.

The ACCAN Grants Program funds projects which undertake research on telecommunications issues, represent consumers or create educational tools which empower consumers to derive the greatest benefit from telecommunications products and services.
Research and outcomes achieved by Grants projects inform ACCAN's work and contribute to the broader evidence base for consumers, regulators and service providers in the telecommunications market.

The successful projects are listed below. For more information on the projects, visit the current Grants page.

2020 ACCAN Grants projects

Apps Can Trap: Tips for Protecting Children’s Privacy

Australian Council on Children and the Media (ACCM)

Exploitative, covert tracking of children when using apps is poorly regulated in Australia. Drawing on Australian and US research into the clandestine tracking of children’s app use, the ACCM will use its app reviewing service to further support parents with specific information and strategies to recognise and minimise threats to privacy when their children use apps.

Telcos for all: Addressing Key Accessibility Issues Faced by Consumers on Telecommunications Carrier Websites

Centre for Accessibility

The project aims to achieve efficient and easier access for consumers with disability to plans, usage, billing, content and other data provided by telecommunications providers on websites and other platforms. Research with assistive technology users will establish the current state of accessibility with information provided to the telecommunications sector on how to remediate identified issues, achieve 'quick wins' and improve access.

Consumer Understandings of Smart Technologies and Their Applications in North West NSW Regional and Rural Communities

Charles Sturt University

Focusing on regional and rural communities in the North West of New South Wales, this project will identify consumer understanding of smart technologies and their applications, engagement with digital infrastructure, the changing nature of development and planning in a digital context and the impact of smart services on social relations. This data on smart literacy will help regional and rural telecommunications consumers to better understand how smart services can be utilised.

Access On Demand: An Analysis of the Accessibility Options on Streaming Television

Curtin University

On demand television has personalised the television experience and has great potential for consumers with disabilities seeking accessible formats. Approaches to the accessibility of subscription versus free to access Australian video on demand platforms will be evaluated with research gathering new insights from consumers with disabilities. This project updates earlier ACCAN funded research into the accessibility of video on demand and will incorporate a study into the accessibility of free to air catch-up television.

E-Change and Remote Work in Australia

Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT)

With evidence that there is an increasingly mobile, regionally based workforce in Australia (‘e-changers’), more needs to be understood about digital access, affordability and skills for this group. This project will examine the telecommunications needs of consumers and small businesses engaged in remote work in a number of locations outside large cities and traditional office settings. Online businesses or self-employed workers in the digital economy will also be a focus.

Co-designing Participatory Strategies With Older Adults to Reduce Perceived Risk and Promote Digital Inclusion

Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT)

As the COVID19 pandemic has highlighted, digital engagement is crucial in fostering social inclusion. Social exclusion is a significant threat to the wellbeing of older adults. This project will design strategies in conjunction with older consumers to incorporate their lived experiences of communications technology, with the aim of assisting seniors to manage security risks to be better equipped to engage with the digital economy.

Regulation of Internet of Things Devices to Protect Consumers

University of Technology Sydney (UTS)

The Internet of Things (IoT) has the potential to transform the way we live and work. But the growth of consumer IoT devices for the home, such as connected appliances and smart assistants, poses serious threats to consumers’ security and privacy. Research will identify and analyse options and make recommendations for best practice regulation of IoT security and privacy.

Achieve Better Broadband for Regional Communities

Wamboin Communications Action Group Inc.

This project will assist regional and rural areas to effectively engage with their local communities and build a business case for the implementation of network capabilities to support their current and future needs. The project will deliver a set of resources that can be applied across regional, rural and remote areas to help communities identify local requirements to achieve better Internet connectivity to support their economic and social growth.

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