Robotic Companions for Behavior Change

In Collaboration with Oren Zuckerman

We are interested how robotic companions can lead to behavior change in humans. One such approach is for them to act as “Empathy Objects”. When people interact, they are often unaware or only partially aware of the effect their behavior has on others. Empathy Objects, by reacting emotionally to people’s behavior through subtle physical gestures,  could increase people’s self-awareness to the emotional state of others, leading to behavior change.


Kip1 in a “scared” and “curious” state.


Our first Empathy Object is Kip1, is a peripheral robotic conversation companion. The robot’s function is to promote non-aggressive conversation between people. It monitors the conversation around it and reacts emotionally to aggressive speech.

For more details, please check out our design research paper at HRI’15 and Extended Abstract at TEI’15.

Research Team: Michal Luria & Almog Ben-David
Design Team: Shlomi Azoulay & Ofri Omer
Social Psychology Collaborators:Gilad Hirschberger & Tal Shani-Sherman


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