Ana R. Delgado



The affective revolution in Psychology has produced enough knowledge to implement abilities of emotional recognition and expression in robots. However, the emotional prototypes are still very basic, almost caricaturized ones. If the goal is constructing robots that respond flexibly, in order to fulfill market demands from different countries while respecting the moral values implicit in the social behavior of their inhabitants, then these robots will have to be programmed attending to detailed descriptions of the emotional experiences that are considered relevant in the interaction context in which the robot is going to be put to work (e.g., assisting people with cognitive or motor disabilities). The advantages of this approach are illustrated with an empirical study on contempt, the seventh basic emotion in Ekman’s theory, and one of the “rediscovered” moral emotions in Haidt’s New Synthesis. A phenomenological analysis of the experience of contempt in 48 Spanish subjects shows the structure and some variations –prejudiced, self-serving, and altruistic– of this emotion. Quantitative information was later obtained with the help of blind coders. Some spontaneous facial expressions that sometimes accompany self-reports are also shown. Finally, some future directions in the Robotics-Psychology intersection are presented (e.g., gender differences in social behavior).


  1. Adolphs, R., 2006. Perception and emotion. How we recognize facial expressions. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 15, 222-226.
  2. Arya, A., Jefferies, L.N., Enns, J.T., DiPaola, S., 2006. Facial actions as visual cues for personality. Computer Animation and Virtual Worlds, 17, 371-382.
  3. Barrett, L. F., Mesquita, B., Ochsner, K. N., Gross, J. J., 2007. The experience of emotion. Annual Review of Psychology, 58, 373-403.
  4. Breazal, C., Brooks, R., 2005. Robot emotion: a functional perspective. En J.M. Fellous & M.A. Arbib (Eds.), Who needs emotions? The brain meets the robot (pp. 271-310). New York: Oxford University Press.
  5. Cañamero, L., Fredslund, J., 2001. I show you how I like you: Can you read it in my face? IEEE Transactions on Systems, Man and Cybernetics, Part A, 31, 454- 459.
  6. Cañamero, L., 2005. Emotion understanding from the perspective of autonomous robots research. Neural Networks, 18, 445-455.
  7. Cosmides, L., Tooby, J., 2005. Neurocognitive adaptations designed for social exchange. In D. M. Buss (Ed.), Evolutionary psychology Handbook (pp. 548-627). New York: Wiley.
  8. Darwin, Ch., 1872. The Expression of the Emotions in Man and Animals. London: John Murray.
  9. Delgado, A. R., 2007. Spanish basic emotion words are consistently ordered. Quality&Quantity. DOI: 10.1007/s11135-007-9121-3
  10. Edelman, G.M., 2006. Second nature. Brain science and human knowledge. London: Yale University Press.
  11. Ekman, P., Friesen, W. V., 1975. Unmasking the face. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.
  12. Ekman, P., Friesen, W. V., 1986. A new pan-cultural facial expression of emotion. Motivation and Emotion, 10, 159-168.
  13. Elfenbein, H.A., Ambady, N., 2002. On the universality and cultural specificity of emotion recognition: A meta-analysis. Psychological Bulletin, 128, 203-235.
  14. Fischer, A.H., Roseman, I.J., 2007. Beat them or ban them: The characteristics and social functions of anger and contempt. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 93, 103-115.
  15. Fortenberry, B., Chenu, J., Movellan, J., 2004. RUBI: A Robotic Platform for Real-time Social Interaction. Third International Conference on Development and Learning (ICDL'04).
  16. García-Rojas, A., Vexo, F., Thalmann, D., Raouzaiou, A., Karpouzis, K., Kollias, S., Moccozet, L., MagnenatThalmann, 2006. Emotional face expression profiles supported by virtual human ontology. Computer Animation and Virtual Worlds, 17, 259-269.
  17. Geary, D.C., 2006. Sex differences in social behavior and cognition: Utility of sexual selection for hypothesis generation. Hormones and Behavior 49, 273 - 275.
  18. Giorgi, A.P., Giorgi, B.M., 2003. The descriptive phenomenological psychological method. In P.M. Camic, J.E. Rodes & L. Yardley (Eds.), Qualitative research in Psychology. Expanding perspectives in methodology and design (pp. 243-273). Washington, DC: APA.
  19. Haidt, J., 2003. The moral emotions. In R. J. Davidson, K. R. Scherer & H. H. Goldsmith (Eds.), Handbook of affective sciences (pp. 852-870). Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  20. Haidt, J., 2007. The new synthesis in moral psychology. Science, 316, 998-1002.
  21. Hall, J.A., 2006. Women's and men's nonverbal communication. Similarities, differences, stereotypes, and origins. In V. Manusov & M.L. Patterson (Eds.), The Sage Handbook of Nonverbal Communication (pp. 201-218). London: Sage.
  22. Izard, C. E., 1977. Human Emotions. New York: Plenum Press.
  23. Jaffee, S., Hyde, J.S., 2000. Gender differences in moral orientation: A meta-analysis. Psychological Bulletin, 126, 703-726.
  24. Kimura, D., 1999. Sex and cognition. Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press.
  25. Lazarus, R. S., 1991. Emotion and adaptation. New York: Oxford University Press.
  26. Matsumoto, D., Ekman, P., 2004. The relationship among expressions, labels, and descriptions of contempt. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 87, 529-540.
  27. Miller, W. I., 1997. The anatomy of disgust. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
  28. Minsky, M., 2006. The Emotion Machine. Commonsense Thinking, Artificial Intelligence, and the Future of the Human Mind. New York: Simon & Schuster.
  29. Moll, J., de Oliveira-Souza, R., Zahn, R., 2008. The neural basis of moral cognition. Sentiments, concepts, and values. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 1124, 161-180.
  30. Oatley, K., Johnson-Laird, P. N., 1996. The communicative theory of emotions: Empirical tests, mental models, and implications for social interaction. In L. L. Martin & A. Tesser (Eds.), Striving and feeling: interactions among goals, affect and selfregulation (pp. 363-393). Hillsdale, NJ: LEA.
  31. Pinker, S., 1997. How the mind works. New York: Norton & Company.
  32. Plutchik, R., 1980. Emotion: A psychoevolutionary synthesis. New York: Harper & Row.
  33. Raouzaiou, A. Karpouzis, K., S. Kollias, S., 2004. Emotion synthesis in virtual environments. In ICEIS 2004, Proceedings of the 6th International Conference on Enterprise Information Systems. Porto, Portugal.
  34. Rozin, P., Lowery, L., Imada, S., Haidt, J., 1999. The CAD triad hypothesis: A mapping between three moral emotions (contempt, anger, disgust) and three moral codes (community, autonomy, divinity). Journal of Personality & Social Psychology, 76, 574- 586.
  35. Salichs, M. A., Barber, R., Khamis, A.M., Malfaz, M., Gorostiza, J.F., Pacheco, R., Rivas, R., Corrales, A., Delgado, E., García, D., 2006. Maggie: A robotic platform for human-robot social interaction. IEEE International Conference on Robotics, Automation and Mechatronics (RAM 2006). Bangkok. Thailand.
  36. Sambataro, F., Dimalta, S., Di Giorgio, A., Taurisano, P., Blasi, G., Scarabino, T., Giannatempo, G., Nardini, M., Bertolino, A., 2006. Preferential responses in amygdala and insula during presentation of facial contempt and disgust. European Journal of Neuroscience, 24, 2355-2362.
  37. Trivers, R. L., 1971. The evolution of reciprocal altruism. Quarterly Review of Biology, 46, 35-57.
  38. Windhager1, S., Slice, D.E., Schaefer, K. Oberzaucher, E. Thorstensen, T. Grammer, K., 2008. Face to face. The perception of automotive designs. Human Nature. D.O.I.: 10.1007/s12110-008-9047-z

Paper Citation

in Harvard Style

R. Delgado A. (2009). SOCIAL ROBOTS, MORAL EMOTIONS . In Proceedings of the 11th International Conference on Enterprise Information Systems - Volume 2: ICEIS, ISBN 978-989-8111-85-2, pages 263-270. DOI: 10.5220/0001830202630270

in Bibtex Style

author={Ana R. Delgado},
booktitle={Proceedings of the 11th International Conference on Enterprise Information Systems - Volume 2: ICEIS,},

in EndNote Style

JO - Proceedings of the 11th International Conference on Enterprise Information Systems - Volume 2: ICEIS,
SN - 978-989-8111-85-2
AU - R. Delgado A.
PY - 2009
SP - 263
EP - 270
DO - 10.5220/0001830202630270