HRI2014 Workshop

HRI: a bridge between Robotics and Neuroscience

A fundamental challenge for robotics is to transfer the human natural social skills to the interaction with a robot. At the same time, neuroscience and psychology are still investigating the mechanisms behind the development of human-human interaction. HRI becomes therefore an ideal contact point for these different disciplines, as the robot can join these two research streams by serving different roles.
From a robotics perspective, the study of interaction is used to implement cognitive architectures and develop cognitive models, which can then be tested in real world environments.
From a neuroscientific perspective, robots could represent an ideal stimulus to establish an interaction with human partners in a controlled manner and make it possible studying quantitatively the behavioral and neural underpinnings of both cognitive and physical interaction.
Ideally, the integration of these two approaches could lead to a positive loop: the implementation of new cognitive architectures may raise new interesting questions for neuroscientists, and the behavioral and neuroscientific results of the human-robot interaction studies could validate or give new inputs for robotics engineers. However, the integration of two different disciplines is always difficult, as often even similar goals are masked by difference in language or methodologies across fields. The aim of this workshop will be to provide a venue for researchers of different disciplines to discuss and present the possible point of contacts, to address the issues and highlight the advantages of bridging the two disciplines in the context of the study of interaction.