Selam! I’m Zainab - a second year Computer Science Ph.D. student at Brown University. I work in the Brown HCI Lab advised by Jeff Huang. My research focuses on designing, building, and maintaining scalable mental health systems powered by Explainable AI for people with minimal access to healthcare. Previously, I worked as a software engineer at Pantera Energy and then as a Research Associate at HCI for Social Well-being Lab. I received my B.Sc. from NUCES in 2018, where I majored in Computer Science.


September 2021: I started grad school at Brown.

August 2021: I resigned from my position as a Research Associate at HCI for Social Well-being Lab at LUMS.

Research Projects

(C)heese(B)urger (T)herapy: an accessible chat-based platform that provides peer support administered through Cogntive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) [website]

Live Typing: real-time typing indicators designed to support interaction rich text-based conversations

Corona Assisted: Pakistan’s first chat-based platform that integrates eXplainable Artificial Intelligence (XAI) for fact-checking information on COVID-19 [website]

HumQadam (Securing Activists for Freedom and Empowerment]: Pakistan’s first question-answer system designed to educate women regarding legal actions that can be undertaken for violence and abuse. [app]


“Together but not together”: Evaluating Typing Indicators for Interaction Rich Communication
Zainab Iftikhar, Yumeng Ma, Jeff Huang
CHI 2023, conditionally accepted

Designing Parental Monitoring and Control Technology: A Systematic Review
Zainab Iftikhar, Osama Younus, Taha Sardar, Hammad Arif, Mobin Javed, and Suleman Shahid

Child-Computer Interaction in the Global South: Designing for Children on the Margins
Suleman Shahid, Zainab Iftikhar, Rabiah Arshad, Omar Mubin, and Abdullah Al Mahmud
IDC 2021 PDF

Technology, Privacy, and User Opinions of COVID-19 Mobile Apps for Contact Tracing: Systematic Search and Content Analysis
Mahmoud Elkhodr, Omar Mubin, Zainab Iftikhar, Maleeha Masood, Belal Alsinglawi, Suleman Shahid, and Fady Alnajjar

Last Updated on 10/13/2022 by Zainab Iftikhar