LCSR Seminar: Hatice Gunes “Emotional Intelligence for Human-Embodied AI Interaction”
Emotional intelligence for artificial systems is not a luxury but a necessity. It is paramount for many applications that require both short and long–term engaging human–technology interactions, including entertainment, hospitality, education, and healthcare. However, creating artificially intelligent systems and interfaces with social and emotional skills is a challenging task. Progress in industry and developments in academia provide us a positive outlook, however, the artificial emotional intelligence of the current technology is still quite limited. Creating technology with artificial emotional intelligence requires the development of perception, learning, action and adaptation capabilities, and the ability to execute these pipelines in real-time in human-AI interactions. Truly addressing these challenges relies on cross-fertilization of multiple research fields, including psychology, nonverbal behaviour understanding, psychiatry, vision, social signal processing, affective computing, and human-computer and human-robot interaction. My lab’s research has been pushing the state of the art in a wide spectrum of research topics in this area, including the design and creation of new datasets; novel feature representations and learning algorithms for sensing and understanding human nonverbal behaviours in solo, dyadic and group settings; designing short/long-term human-robot adaptive interactions for wellbeing; and creating algorithmic solutions to mitigate the bias that creeps into these systems.
In this talk, I will present the recent explorations of the Cambridge Affective Intelligence and Robotics Lab in these areas with insights for human embodied-AI interaction research.
Hatice Gunes is a Professor of Affective Intelligence and Robotics (AFAR) and leads the AFAR Lab at the University of Cambridge’s Department of Computer Science and Technology. Her expertise is in the areas of affective computing and social signal processing cross-fertilising research in multimodal interaction, computer vision, signal processing, machine learning and social robotics. She has published over 155 papers in these areas (H-index=36, citations > 7,300), with most recent works on lifelong learning for facial expression recognition, fairness, and affective robotics; and longitudinal HRI for wellbeing. She has served as an Associate Editor for IEEE Transactions on Affective Computing, IEEE Transactions on Multimedia, and Image and Vision Computing Journal, and has guest edited many Special Issues, the latest ones being 2022 Int’l Journal of Social Robotics Special Issue on Embodied Agents for Wellbeing, 2022 Frontiers in Robotics and AI Special Issue on Lifelong Learning and Long-Term Human-Robot Interaction, and 2021 IEEE Transactions on Affective Computing Special Issue on Automated Perception of Human Affect from Longitudinal Behavioural Data. Other research highlights include Outstanding PC Award at ACM/IEEE HRI’23, RSJ/KROS Distinguished Interdisciplinary Research Award Finalist at IEEE RO-MAN’21, Distinguished PC Award at IJCAI’21, Best Paper Award Finalist at IEEE RO-MAN’20, Finalist for the 2018 Frontiers Spotlight Award, Outstanding Paper Award at IEEE FG’11, and Best Demo Award at IEEE ACII’09. Prof Gunes is a former President of the Association for the Advancement of Affective Computing (2017-2019), is/was the General Co-Chair of ACM ICMI’24 and ACII’19, and the Program Co-Chair of ACM/IEEE HRI’20 and IEEE FG’17. She was the Chair of the Steering Board of IEEE Transactions on Affective Computing (2017-2019) and was a member of the Human-Robot Interaction Steering Committee (2018-2021. Her research has been supported by various competitive grants, with funding from Google, the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council UK (EPSRC), Innovate UK, British Council, Alan Turing Institute and EU Horizon 2020. In 2019 she was awarded a prestigious EPSRC Fellowship to investigate adaptive robotic emotional intelligence for wellbeing (2019-2024) and has been named a Faculty Fellow of the Alan Turing Institute – UK’s national centre for data science and artificial intelligence (2019-2021). Prof Gunes is currently a Staff Fellow of Trinity Hall, a Senior Member of the IEEE, and a member of the AAAC.