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SAILS Lunch Time Seminar: Roy de Kleijn

Monday 18 December 2023
Online only

Anthropomorphization in human-robot interaction

Humans seem to regard robots as social actors, they show empathy and altruism toward them and are concerned for their wellbeing. But why exactly would this be the case? One hypothesis is confusion: we don’t know exactly what they are, so we treat them as humans as a cognitive heuristic. Another hypothesis is the similarity hypothesis: what looks human is treated as human. In this talk, I will discuss the role of robots’ similarity to humans and its effect on prosocial behaviour, as well as problems surrounding such behaviour in the lab, and it seems that these competing hypotheses do not have a clear winner between them.

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