The Potential of Telepresence Robots for Intergroup Contact

Avner Peled, Teemu Leinonen, Béatrice Hasler

Abstract

We propose the use of telepresence robots as a medium for intergroup contact that aims at reducing prejudice between groups in conflict. We argue for robots as a midpoint between online communication and a face-to-face meeting, combining the flexibility of the virtual world and the depth of physical interactions. We define the basic architecture of telepresence systems and present a conceptual framework for robot-mediated encounters in an intergroup context. We then provide design guidelines for telepresence systems that may guide future implementations of robotic intergroup contact.

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