Professor Kerstin Dautenhahn, PhD, University of Bielefeld

Canada 150 Research Chair in Intelligent Robotics
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Department of Systems Design Engineering
Cross-appointed with the David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science at University of Waterloo

Phone: 519-888-4567 x31455
Location: E5 5027
Web site: Kerstin Dautenhahn


Professor Chrystopher Nehaniv, PhD, University of California

Department of Systems Design Engineering
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

Phone: 519-888-4567 x40168
Location: E7 6322
Web site: Chrystopher Nehaniv


Research Assistant Professors

moojanMoojan Ghafurian, PhD, Pennsylvania State University

Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

My research explores computational models of how humans interact with computers to inform user-centered design that is applied to assistive technologies for the care of people with cognitive disabilities, and primarily persons with Alzheimer's disease. I am also a member of the Computational Health Informatics Lab (CHIL) and AGE-WELL.  
Web site: Moojan Ghafurian
Research Interests: HCI, HRI, cognitive science, AI, Assistive Technology


Lab Manager

alex aroyoAlexander M. Aroyo, PhD, Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia

My research interest is to endow humanoid robots with the capability of complex social interactions with humans. Moreover, I study how trust towards robots evolves in time and investigate how overtrusting them could lead to social engineering. I am also interested in the domain of space robotics.
Location: E7 5412
Research interests: complex HRI, social humanoid robotics, trust, social engineering, space robotics

Postdoctoral Fellows

john munozJohn Muñoz, PhD, Universidade da Madeira

I am a research scientist and game designer interested in using human body signals to create more "humanized" assistive technologies based on games and interactive systems. My job at SIRRL is on idealizing game scenarios where human and robots can play together to foster social connectivity.  
Location: E5 5437
Website: John Muñoz
Research Interests: game design, HRI and games, physiological sensing, biocybernetic adaptation, human-computer interaction.


shrutiShruti Chandra, PhD

My research goal is to develop social robots for well-being. In my PhD, I worked on a project to enhance children’s handwriting with help of a social robot. This research contributed to education, pedagogy, interaction design and social robotics. My vision is to integrate social robots in people’s lives that can interact successfully and respond appropriately in real-world, and can sustain long-term autonomous interactions.
Location: E7 5404
Research Interests: Social robotics, Long-term HRI, Autonomus robots, Psychology, Interaction Design, Pedagogy, Education, AI, Machine Learning


PhD Students

Ellie SanoubariElaheh (Ellie) Sanoubari

In my PhD research I am borrowing from dramaturgy to design social robotic systems that can be used for fostering anti-bullying peer-support between children.
Location: E7 5408
Research Interests: Social HRI, HRI in education, Assistive technology, Adaptive HRI, Child-robot interaction, Pedagogical HRI, Trust in HRI, HRI in-the-wild, Cross-cultural HRI, Serious games, Bullying interventions
(photo credit: Kira Koop)

Samira RasouliSamira Rasouli 

I am a Ph.D. student in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department. I'm interested in applying intelligent assistive technologies to health issues.
Location:E7 5404
Research Interests: Assistive Technologies, Robot-Assisted Therapy, Human-Robot Interaction, Machine Intelligence.

ali noormohammadiAli Noormohammadi Asl

My research interests are in the area of machine learning, control, and robotics. Now, I am working on planning and decision making in human-robot interaction.
Location:E7 5406
Research Interests: Machine Learning, Robotics

Sahand ShaghaghiSahand Shaghaghi

My research focuses on the creation of visual capabilities for robotic platforms. Previously I have investigated anthropomorphic visual systems. Currently, I am exploring cognitive architectures that could enable robotic platforms with making memory informed vision-dominant decisions. Here, Gaze and adaptation of human-like gaze behavior for robotic platforms are priorities. In this context, HRI experiments are utilized to investigate gaze-humanness, memory, play and shared attention. 
Research Interests: Visual Perception, HRI, Computer Vision, Machine Vision, Gaze, Social Robotics, Autonomous Robotics, 3D Vision


Mahsa GolchoubianMahsa Golchoubian

I am a PhD student at the System Design Engineering Department in both SIRRL and SHEVS Lab. The focus of my research is on socially compliant mobile robots that can navigate in pedestrian-rich environments.
Research interest: Motion planning and Control, Human-Robot Interaction, Machine Learning, Autonomous vehicles.

MASc Students

Hamza MehdiHamza Mahdi

Biomedical engineering graduate with a passion for robotics. I want to explore the everyday-role of robotics in society.
Location: E7 5412
Research Interests: human-robot interaction, child play and development, rehabilitation, assistive technologies, robot acceptance

alperen akgunSami Alperen Akgun

My main goal is to reduce the gap between robots and humans through my research on robotics and HRI. Currently, my research focus is on human multi-robot interaction and machine learning for multi-agent systems.
Location: E7 5408
Google Scholar, Linkedin
Research Interests: social robotics, human-multi robot interaction, multi-agent systems

pourya aliasghariPourya Aliasghari

I am a Master’s student in the Systems Design Engineering Department. My research interests are mostly in the area of developing social and intelligent robots.
Location: E7 5412
Research Interests: Social Robotics, Human-Robot Interaction, Intelligent Systems.

austin kothigAustin Kothig

The goal of my research is to develop computational models of social engagement with a robotic counterpart, and explore various policies for maintaining this engagement. 
Location: E7 5408
Research Interests: Human-Robot Interaction, Social Engagement, Physiological Sensing, Machine Learning


owais hamidOwais Hamid

I work on Cognitive Architectures for Robots. My current work involves designing Architectures for Robot movement learning using Motor and Vision inputs, along with imitation learning.
Location: E7-5406
Research Interests: Cognitive Architectures, Neuro-Robotics, Adaptive Control, Artificial Intelligence

negin aziziNegin Azizi

I am a master’s student in Electrical and Computer Engineering. My research focuses on using robots as assistive tools for children with special needs.
Research interests: Social robotics, Human-Robot Interaction, Machine Learning


Undergraduate Researchers

shahed salehShahed Saleh

As a co-op student at the SIRRL lab, I am utilizing 3D printing to create the body of a social robot that will be used in a study focused on child-robot interactive play, specifically in a multi-player scenario. I will also be working on the robot's systems integration.
Research Interests: Cobots, Human-Robot Interaction, Mechatronics Systems 

Garima GuptaGarima Gupta

At the Social and Intelligent Robotics Research Laboratory (SIRRL), my work is focused on conducting literature reviews on medical issues and psychological disorders. These literature reviews are then used to map the needs of individuals with the issue/disorder in the context of robot-assisted therapy and education.


serenaSerena Poonawalla

I am a research assistant at the Social and Intelligent Robotics Research Laboratory working with Furhat robots. My work involves developing a framework for effective human-robot interactions as well as creating applications and scenarios to showcase the Furhat robot’s abilities.


ishaIsha Dhode

I am an undergraduate research assistant working with the Social and Intelligent Robotics Research Laboratory, where my role is to perform literature reviews on studies that assess the impacts of smart devices in the lives of elder adults.


MannatMannat Kapoor

I am an undergraduate research assistant at the Social and Intelligent Robotics Research Laboratory (SIRRL) assessing the impact of smart home devices on older adults. In particular, my work involves investigating studies and extracting data to conduct literature reviews.

Former members

 aishwaryaAishwarya Aravamuthan

My MASc research involved multi-stage game design for intergenerational interaction mediated by the social robot, Pepper; and developing a canvas for HRI game design. My thesis is available here.
Research Interests: Game Design, HRI


 Tahere Tahereh Kamali, PhD, University of Waterloo

  Website: Tahereh Kamali
  Research Interests: Machine Learning, HRI, Signal/Image Processing


Aayush Wadehra

I worked on 3D printing and assembling a small humanoid, desk-top robot, known as Maki. It featured 6 axis degrees of freedom, allowing it to move its head, rotate its body, and even blink its eyes! The robot also featured a camera and microphone to act as sensors and allow it to process information from its surrounding environment.

KritikaKritika Mehta

I worked on developing a set of demos of Pepper capabilities - basic behaviours that can then be used in research for different human-robot interaction projects. My work interest included human-computer interaction and user experience design.


VanessaVenessa Hughes

I worked with 3D printable robots including the MAKI and Poppy robot. My work entailed sourcing components for the robots, assembling the robots and testing their functionalities. Research components of my work included investigating how additional sensors could be interfaced to enhance how the robots interact with humans and I implemented various interaction games within the MAKI robot. 

Katrin and PepperKatrin Fischer

My research focused on trust and collaboration in human-robot interaction and usability studies to improve interactions with robots. One of my projects involved planning and conducting a study to ascertain how collaboration levels of intergenerational participants are affected by the presence of the Pepper robot.
Research Interests: human-robot interaction, trust in robots, social robotics, usability, user experience design

alexHyunjun (Alex) Cho

I was a research assistant for the social robotics research group, I specifically helped in working with the 3 MiRo-b robots in the social robotics lab, I also assisted in various other tasks around the lab.


derek taoDerek Tao

I was an undergraduate research assistant and my research interest was natural language processing. I had worked on text generation, semantic analysis, and affective computing.
Research Interests: Natural Language Processing

AnaAna Djurkovic

My focus as an assistant for the Social and Intelligent Robotics Research group is to create a 3D printable humanoid robot, and investigate how it can be used in robot-assisted therapy. Specifically, implementing child-robot interaction games with open source robots such as MAKI.

jessy songJessy Song

I am an undergraduate student in Biomedical Engineering and I am interested in robotics research and its applications. I worked on the processing of physiological sensing data and learning about the development of socially intelligent robots.


iris fangXiaoxiao Fang

I am an undergraduate student in Computer Science and Statistics. I joined Social and Intelligent Robotics Research Laboratory (SIRRL) to work as a Robotics Backend Software Developer.