Social Robots: Applications and Sustainability Priorities

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TG relation: TG: Socially Intelligent Robots and Societal Applications (SIRo-SA) TG: Sustainability and Environmental Aspects 

Areas mainly addressed: Robotics and AI/Big Data Value, Ethical, Legal, Social, Economic implications of robotics, B2B and innovation, Net Zero/Sustainability 

Main questions to be answered: 

· 1. Challenges and priorities: what should be contribution of social robots for sustainability and how the sustainability goals can be defined from social robotics perspective. 

· 2. Kinds of sustainability: What kinds of sustainability to consider and prioritize: Social, Environmental, Economical and those can be achieved by design? 

· 3. Real World Perspetctive: How sustainable applications can be ensured from the real world perspective: Stand alone robot vs ecosystem of technologies? End user vs Public Perception? 

WS Description: Should Social Robots now think about Sustainability? Yes! Remember the ERF 2022 workshop on “Social Robots: the duality of sustainability and societal applications”? The duality which we introduced and explored: how a social robot can be sustainable and how it can be applied for sustainable applications. Based on input from experts with diverse backgrounds (in talks, panel discussions, audience engagement), it was evident that there are several aspects to consider and there is a need to dive deeper, create a comprehensive list, and brainstorm and set priorities among those. 

This second edition of the workshop will address the above needs, provide an opportunity to contribute and shape this key aspect together, with a more dedicated engagement with stakeholders. 

The workshop will also set the context for the next important question of Sustainable balance of Human-Robots co-existence. 

Intended outcome: Workshop expected to create a roadmap or white paper, Workshop on recent developments in technology or applications, Workshops engaging non-roboticists to understand needs/goals (policy, commercial, technical), Workshop covering material new to ERF that the Robotics community should engage with 

Approach: The main aims of the workshop is to 

1. Ensure that there is community being built with all the stakeholders, and create the much needed awareness around this central aspect of Sustanability and Applications of Social Robots. 

2. Establish a multi-way communication channel to to strengthen the collaborative efforts around these topics. 

In this regards, the workshop will bring different stakeholders together, identify and create interest groups, and foster discussion to collect valuable insights and feedback. Therefore, the agenda is designed to balance the time division necessary to accommodate talks from various stakeholders, create the ground for discussion, open the floor for brainstorming and to collect feedback for roadmapping through audience engagement. 

To set the ground, selected experts and panelists (from industry, academics, end users, policy makers) will be invited for short presentations to provide insiders perspectives and position statements. The questions will be provided to the panelists and speakers in advance. This will avoid having general talks from the speakers, but to the points and focused presentations. Also to better capture the requirements, barriers, potentials and policies at EU level, the invited experts are from different countries of Europe. 

The outline of the agenda and theme (Total 80 Minutes): 

– Introduction by organizers: objectives, themes, past findings, objectives (5 minutes) 

– Position statements from Industry (10 minutes) 

– Position statement from Academics (10 minutes) 

– Position statement form cross disciplinary experts, end users and policy makers (10 minutes) 

– Interactive Panel discussion including audience engagement (40min) 

– Concluding remarks, with pointers for next steps and white paper creation (5 minutes) 

Contributors: Speakers/panelists: 


(Industry and Innovation) 

– Ms. Franziska Kirstein, Senior Scientific Domain Lead, Blue Ocean Robotics, Denmark 

– Dr. Amit Kumar Pandey, Chief Robotics and AI Officer, Rovial Space, France; President, Socients AI and Robotics, France 

– Mr. Francesco Ferro, CEO, PAL Robotics, Spain 

(End users) 

– Dr. Alberto Sanna, Director, Scientific Institute San Raffaele, The San Raffaele Smart City, Milan, Italy 

(Research and Academics) 

– Prof. Praminda Caleb-Solly, Professor of Embodied Intelligence, University of Nottingham, School of Computer Science, UK 

– Prof. Filippo Cavallo, Department of Industrial Engineering, University of Florence, Italy 

(Public perception) 

– Dr. Anneli Roose, Coordinator for Robotics4eu, Estonia 

– Dr. Agnes Delaborde, Laboratoire national de métrologie et d’essais, France 


· Amit Kumar Pandey,, Socients AI and Robotics

· Franziska Kirstein,, Blue Ocean Robotics

Event Timeslots (1)

Main Stage – Floor 1
15 March - ELSE
Amit Kumar Pandey