During the past decade, a vast amount of research in Human-Machine Interaction (HMI) has been devoted to enabling machines (robots, Embodied Conversational Agents, computers) to optimally assist humans and improve their performance in daily and task-related chores. For a machine to be able to assist humans on a specific task, it should be endowed with social intelligence capabilities. These include understanding human’s behavioral, mental and emotional states and adapting adequately to them. For instance, in Human-Robot Interaction, the robot should be able to detect when the user intends to interact with it, if he/she is engaged or when he/she wants to stop the interaction (disengage). This refers to the ability to detect user engagement state in social robotics. Consequently, strategies that allow robots to establish and maintain user engagement state could be implemented in the robot’s architecture. This talk focuses on research approaches for the automatic analysis and prediction of human behavior and affective states for socially intelligent machines.
Hanan Salam holds a PhD in Telecommunications, Information, and Communication Sciences and Technologies from CentraleSupélec, an engineering degree in Computer Science and Telecommunications from the Lebanese University, and a Masters degree in Control, Robotics, Signal and Image Processing from Ecole Centrale de Nantes. She is the co-founder and president of Women in AI, an international non-profit Do-Tank whose mission is to close the gender gap in the domain of Artificial Intelligence through education, research, and events. After spending three years as a researcher and lecturer at the University of Pierre and Marie Curie (Sorbonne), she worked in the robotics industry where she was an R&D Engineer in AI and Robotics at A.I.Mergence, a startup specialized in intelligent autonomous robots for home security. Following, she worked as an independent consultant in AI and Data Science, in parallel with part-time lecturing at different French universities and engineering schools. She then joined Emlyon Business School as an associate professor in AI. She is currently an Assistant Professor at New York University, Abu Dhabi. She has published several international peer-reviewed conference and journal papers on social robotics and intelligent affective computing. Her scientific interests include Artificial Intelligence, Human-Machine Interaction, social robotics, computer vision, machine learning and affective computing. She is an advocate of technology for common good and an activist for women empowerment.