In the past decades, the interaction between humans and robots has significantly increased. Robots get out of the cages – where they used to be confined for the execution of industrial tasks – to operate and share the same workspace with humans, and, more recently, also to operate connected to their users’ bodies. This raised important issues in the robotics community that include the need for safety, but also the quest for human-centered methods, to evaluate human acceptance, experience, and awareness. These methods are not yet established parts of roboticists’ toolkits, e.g., human users are often seen as a disturbance when designing controllers or users are only considered in the final validation phase of the developed devices. Moreover, we do believe that there is a lack of knowledge in the robotics community of methodologies to evaluate the human acceptance and interaction with the robotic systems.
The aim of this workshop is to provide practical tools for the evaluation of human factors in human-robot interaction scenarios to robotics experts. Therefore, scientists from communities outside robotics are involved in the workshop, e.g., from neuroscience and psychology. Robotics experts will also participate to discuss innovative approaches for a human-aware design and control of artificial systems and user-in-the loop-robotic interaction. The full-day workshop will have three sessions representing the three main aspects of a collaborative system, i.e., humans, robots and interfaces. Invited experts will present their approaches and results in a mixture of research talks and methodical tutorials, which especially focus on methods to understand human perception, cognition, and behavior, and how to leverage on these for a more informed design of collaborative robots architectures and human-in-the-loop controllers and interfaces. At the end, a discussion session will integrate the insights from the different expertise represented in the workshop, and will aim at bridging the gap between complementary yet related research fields for the foundations of a multi-disciplinary human-centered approach to robotics. During such discussion session, we will tackle all the research questions and issues of overall relevance, involving the audience, speakers, and organizers, with special attention to young researchers and students. This will help in pursuing the long-term objective of the workshop to stimulate and foster the dialogue between disciplines with intensive discussions.