Envisioning and Questioning Near Future Urban Robotics

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceedings/Edited volumeConference contributionScientificpeer-review


Robotic services, which have started to appear in urban environments, are going to transform our society. Designers of these robots are not only required to meet technical and legal challenges, but also address the potential social, political, and ethical consequences of their design choices. In this paper, we present a workshop format with its related tools intended for enabling speculation about such possible futures and fostering reflection on potential socio-ethical implications that might support/oppose these futures. We report the results and discussion of one particular workshop case, in which the implementation of two
particular robotic services for a city was envisioned and questioned, i.e., surveillance and delivery of goods. By discussing the results, we illustrate how such a workshop format might be beneficial for setting the agenda for a more conscious design of urban robots and orienting future research towards meaningful themes related to the emerging coexistence scenarios between citizens and robots.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDesign and Semantics of Form and Movement - Desform 2019
EditorsSara Colombo, Yihyun Lim, Miguel Bruns Alonso, Lin-Lin Chen, Tom Djajadiningrat
Number of pages9
ISBN (Electronic)978-0-578-60379-7
Publication statusPublished - 2019
EventDeSforM 2019: Beyond Intelligence - MIT Campus, Cambridge, United States
Duration: 9 Oct 20199 Oct 2019


ConferenceDeSforM 2019
CountryUnited States


  • Robot Conceptualisations,
  • Design Workshop
  • Future Scenario
  • Urban Robotics
  • Robot Capabilities
  • Robot Implications


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