Workshop Objectives

This workshop’s main goal is to bring together a multidisciplinary community to identify and overcome major challenges in HRI research to investigate the applications of robots for wellbeing in the real world. The specific topics of this workshop sought to address the following open challenges:

1. What are the main opportunities and challenges in the deployment of robots for wellbeing in the real world?

The deployment and adoption of robots for wellbeing in the real world have many potentials but also challenges. This workshop seeks to draw a research agenda that encompasses the directions for robotic applications for wellbeing highlighted in the literature and help researchers in the field of robotics identify opportunities and challenges to address in their future work.

2. How can we reduce the gap between people’s expectations and the reality of robotic applications?

Despite the widespread use of robots in our society, the mismatch between people’s expectations and reality still exists. People showed high and, at times, unrealistic expectations towards robots and this priming – due to, for example, tech giant demos – may form one of the barriers to the adoption of robots in real-world settings. In this workshop, we will seek to discuss how as researchers, we can reduce this gap to make people more aware of the actual capabilities that robots can be endowed with to date.

3. How can we inform the design of robots for wellbeing, grounding it in the psychology/psychiatry literature?

As robotic applications become more prevalent in daily life, it is becoming clearer how they can support humans’ physical and mental wellbeing. However, robots should be designed to promote wellbeing in line with psychological theories and methods. For this reason, the HRI community should be more aware of the need for multidisciplinary research to design robots for improving wellbeing, which will be one of the main highlights of our workshop.