Social Impact of Long-Term Cooperation With Robots

SAR envisions robots acting in very human-like roles, such as coach, therapist, or partner. This is a sharp contrast from manufacturing or office assistant roles that are more well-understood. In some cases, we can use human-human interaction as a guide for HRI; in others, human-computer interaction can be a suitable guide. However, there may be cases where neither human-human nor human-computer interaction provide a sufficient framework to envision how people may react to a robot over a long term. Empirical research is required in order to examine these relationships in more detail.

Preliminary work suggests that a person sometimes views a robot as very machine-like, but others suggest that a robot can take on a social role. Long-term interaction between humans and robots might also expose previously unforeseen challenges for creating and sustaining relationships. Experiment design experts suggest that participants in lab studies might subconsciously change their reactions to the robot given certain assumptions that arise from being in a research setting. This could have ramifications for in-lab research related to lt-HRI, requiring out-of-lab validation as well. This objective will study these and other social factors related to lt-HRI to observe how they may impact acceptance and cooperation.


  • Director: Dr. David Feil-Seifer
  • Zachary Carlson
  • Louise Lemmon
  • Houston Lucas
  • Jamie Poston
  • Jared Rhizor
  • Timothy Sweet


  • Carlson, Z., Sweet, T., Rhizor, J., Lucas, H., Poston, J., & Feil-Seifer, D. Team-Building Activities For Heterogeneous Groups of Humans and Robots. In International Conference on Social Robotics (ICSR), page 113-123, Paris, France, Oct 2015. ( details ) ( .pdf )
  • Carlson, Z., Lemmon, L., Higgins, M., Frank, D., Salek Shahrezaie, R., & Feil-Seifer, D. Perceived mistreatment and emotional capability following aggressive treatment of robots and computers. In International Journal of Social Robotics (IJSR), 11(5):727-739, Oct 2019. ( details ) ( .pdf )
  • Lucas, H., Poston, J., Yocum, N., Carlson, Z., & Feil-Seifer, D. Too big to be mistreated? Examining the Role of Robot Size on Perceptions of Mistreatment. In IEEE International Symposium on Robot and Human Interactive Communication (RO-MAN), page 1071-1076, New York, NY, Aug 2016. ( details ) ( .pdf )