Science communication event / Public Engagement

Robotic technologies pose fascinating new opportunities, but also yield controversial questions and new societal challenges. The closing event of the workshop series “Responsible Robotics” provides an opportunity for a broader public to discuss such societal aspects of robotics. For this purpose, researchers of the Doctoral College “Trust in Robots – Trusting Robots” have developed a variety of methods (e.g. hands-on tools, audience engagement tools) for engagement and dialogue. Their research topics range from safety, trust and body language in human-robot-interaction to scepticism and overconfidence in autonomous robot decision making.

On 22 January 2021, the broader public was invited to an online event for engagement and dialogue with the PhD researchers about societal aspects of robotics.

The main intended audience of this event were interested publics and people who are not familiar with robotics research. The aim was decidedly not to stage scientific talks for other researchers but to practice the increasingly more important skill of engaging with publics/science communication. This includes being able to identify aspects of research topics that are of societal interest (and may be subject of societal controversies) and developing creative ways of making them subject of open debate.

The event was supported by:

  • Vice Rector Prof. Kurt Matyas, Academic Affairs, TU Wien
  • Research Ethics Coordinator Marjo Rauhala, RTI Support, TU Wien
  • Österreichischer Verein zur Förderung der Betriebswirtschaftlichen Forschung und Lehre

Illustrations by Eva Rudofsky