Making sense of social robots: a structural analysis of the layperson's social representation of robots

N. Piçarra, J. C. Giger*, G. Pochwatko, G. Gonçalves

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Introduction Given their novelty, social robots (i.e., robots using natural language, displaying and recognizing emotions) will generate uncertainty among users. Social representations allow making sense of the new, drawing from existing knowledge. Objective A free association questionnaire was administered to 212 Portuguese adults to identify the social representation of robot. Method Data was analysed with EVOC 2000 and SIMI 2000 software. Results The social representation of robot is organized around the ideas of technology, help and future. Differences in the representation according to age, gender and level of education where also identified. Conclusion The social representation of robot is marked by the conception of it as a tool. This contrasts with the concept of social robots as social agents. Implications for social robot's acceptance are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)277-289
Number of pages13
JournalRevue Europeenne de Psychologie Appliquee
Volume66
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2016
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Acceptance of technology
  • Social representation
  • Social robots
  • Structural analyses

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