My research interests are driven by an overall ambition to ensure robots have a positive impact when deployed into real world environments, with a focus on human-robot interaction. I look to achieve this by:

(i) pursuing domain expert-led robot development through co-design studies and human-in-the-loop automation methods

(ii) undertaking human-robot interaction studies examining what makes for ``effective'' human-robot interaction, but also the ethical risks (and opportunities) posed by such, e.g. considering robots can influence those people around them

This talk I gave at Umeå University in February 2022 gives a good overview of what I'm up to.

Working with Domain Experts

For a detailed why and how see this Frontiers paper LEADOR: A Method for End-To-End Participatory Design of Autonomous Social Robots from myself, Emmanuel Senft and Séverin Lemaignan.

Current research projects:

Designing a group robot assistant for teenagers with teenagers: a collaboration with Sarah Gillet, see our upcoming paper at RO-MAN 2022.

Previous research projects:

A robot fitness coach co-designed and "taught" how to support exercisers in a real gym environment by a human gym instructor [1] which made international news.

Working with therapists to inform the design and application of socially assistive robots for improving patient engagement with therapy [2,3]

Robots and Social Influence

For a 5 minute introduction to this topic, see this talk I gave at the Robo-Identity workshop held at HRI 2021. The associated workshop paper, which gives good hints towards some of my future research directions, can be found here .

Current research projects:

Reflecting on e.g. how robot social influence and the intentional design of robot identity performances might be used to challenge gender norms for an actively feminist HRI design stance [3,4]

Previous research projects:

Examining the potential tension between ethics and effectiveness on anthropomorphism in socially assistive robots [5]

Investigating whether social persuasion strategies used by e.g. therapists will also increase how much exercise people are willing to do with a social robot [6]

Additional Projects and Collaborations

PhD student Laura Moradbakhti from Linz Institute of Technology came and spent a few weeks with us at Uppsala in February 2022. We're working together on a study examining the potential impacts of robot gender and agency on the basic psychological needs of informal caregivers, formal caregivers and care receivers.

For almost a year now I've been working with Erik Lagerstedt, Ilaria Torre and Anna Offenwanger on a "side project" which started as an attempt to replicate Anna's 2021 CHI paper on gender bias in HCI research participation but has grown to include a more intersectional analysis of who is taking part and who is doing HRI. A short description is available in our paper and video presentation) for the DEI workshop at HRI 2022

Selected Publications

[1] Winkle, Katie, et al. "In-situ learning from a domain expert for real world socially assistive robot deployment." Proceedings of Robotics: Science and Systems. Vol. 10. 2020. Paper; Video Presentation

[2] Winkle, Katie, et al. "Social robots for engagement in rehabilitative therapies: Design implications from a study with therapists." 2018 13th ACM/IEEE International Conference on Human-Robot Interaction (HRI). IEEE, 2018. Paper

[3] Winkle, Katie, et al. "Boosting robot credibility and challenging gender norms in responding to abusive behaviour: a case for feminist robots." Companion of the 2021 ACM/IEEE international conference on human-robot interaction. 2021. Paper; Video Presentation

[4] Winkle, Katie, et al. "Norm-Breaking Responses to Sexist Abuse: A Cross-Cultural Human Robot Interaction Study." Proceedings of the 2022 ACM/IEEE International Conference on Human-Robot Interaction. 2022. Paper; Video Presentation

[5] Winkle, Katie, et al. "Assessing and addressing ethical risk from anthropomorphism and deception in socially assistive robots." Proceedings of the 2021 ACM/IEEE International Conference on Human-Robot Interaction. 2021. Paper; Video Presentation

[6] Winkle, Katie, et al. "Effective persuasion strategies for socially assistive robots." 2019 14th ACM/IEEE International Conference on Human-Robot Interaction (HRI). IEEE, 2019. Paper