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Type: Theses
Title: The impact of age-related variables on facial comparisons with images of children: algorithm and practitioner performance
Author: Michalski, Dana Jaclyn
Issue Date: 2018
School/Discipline: School of Psychology
Abstract: Determining the identity of children is critical for many national security agencies for example, to aid in the fight against child exploitation, trafficking, and radicalised minors, as well as for passport control and visa issuance purposes. Facial comparison is one method that may be used to achieve this. Facial comparison can be conducted using an algorithm (within a facial recognition system), manually by a facial comparison practitioner, or by a combination of the two. Much of the previous research examining facial comparison performance of both algorithms and practitioners has been conducted using images of adults. Due to the substantial amount of age-related facial growth that occurs in childhood, compared to adulthood, it is likely that performance will be poorer with images of children. The overarching aim of the research therefore, was to determine the impact of age-related variables, namely chronological age and age variation (the age difference between images) on facial comparison performance of algorithms and practitioners with images of children. Study 1 involved consultation with national security agencies and algorithm vendors to identify the key requirements to examine in this thesis. After reviewing the literature to identify research gaps, five empirical studies were conducted. To ensure the studies were as operationally relevant as possible, a large database containing several million controlled images of children and adults was sourced, and five state-of-the-art facial recognition algorithms were employed. In addition, facial comparison practitioners from a government agency participated in the practitioner studies. Study 2A compared algorithm performance with images of children to performance with images of adults. Study 2B compared practitioner performance with images of children to performance with images of adults. Study 3A examined algorithm performance with images of children at each chronological age in childhood (0–17 years) and age variations ranging from 0–10 years apart. Study 3B examined practitioner performance on the same age-related variables examined in Study 3A. Study 4 demonstrated how the data collected in Study 3A and 3B could be used to answer agency specific questions. This thesis concludes with a series of recommendations for both the algorithm and practitioner domains, as well as future research directions designed to improve knowledge and performance regarding facial comparisons with images of children.
Advisor: Semmler, Carolyn
Heyer, Rebecca
Dissertation Note: Thesis (Ph.D.) -- University of Adelaide, School of Psychology, 2018
Keywords: facial comparison practitioners
facial recognition algorithms
child identification
operational images
Provenance: Copyright material removed from digital thesis. See print copy in University of Adelaide Library for full text.
This electronic version is made publicly available by the University of Adelaide in accordance with its open access policy for student theses. Copyright in this thesis remains with the author. This thesis may incorporate third party material which has been used by the author pursuant to Fair Dealing exceptions. If you are the owner of any included third party copyright material you wish to be removed from this electronic version, please complete the take down form located at:
DOI: 10.4225/55/5ab4385633544
Appears in Collections:Research Theses

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