More and more, society is being populated by ‘autonomous’ (intelligent, social) technologies and is thus being penetrated by processes of automation. Assistance robots are already being prepared for use in various areas of society, for example in the care and therapy sectors. The project is dedicated to the societal conditions of social robotics and the consequences of this increasing technologisation of social practice.

Scientific Issues

How do robots become techno-social actors – regarding both construction processes in the lab as well as in real experiments at the locations of their future application (for example in nursing homes)?

Thesis

Thanks to the ever closer interaction between humans and machines in daily life, such as in care-giving and therapy, social robots are no longer regarded by humans as being passive unrelated objects; they are being integrated into these fields as personalized companions. Robotics itself must also move in this direction: using new procedures – tinkering – and methods of machine learning, the robot is being manufactured in the lab as a socially intelligent being.

Contribution to the Dimension of 'Sociality'

This project is part of the scientific research of MCTS

It is empirically necessary to approach the relationship between mechanical and human actors using ethnographic and video-graphic methods. Such an approach is understood as being interdisciplinary, as it relates different research interests (i.e. from the fields of interaction design and human robots interaction HRI) to each other and sociologically enriches them. The relationship between robotics and society is considered from a reflexive point of view here and brought into public dialogue as a reflection on the challenges and chances of social robotics.