UPEC-LISSI INRIA IRISA                                                                                                                 

Assistance and Service Robotics in a Human Environment:
From Personal Mobility Aids to Rehabilitation-Oriented Robotics

Workshop in conjunction with the 2018 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems


Assistive Robotics is a growing area of research, ranging, from intelligent aid systems such as exoskeletons, wearable haptic devices and path planners for autonomous wheelchairs.. The proposed workshop focuses on Robotics for people assistance with a particular focus on frail people. This is indeed a critical and urgent problem in our aging society (it is projected that the combined senior and geriatric population will reach 2.1 billion by 2050). The idea is then to gather experts from various fields to discuss issues related to the challenging problem of assisting people in their everyday life. Topics related to physical human-robot interaction, mobility assistance, guidance, healthcare and well-being will be covered. Fundamental and technological research on (semi-)autonomous indoor vehicles, sensor and actuator networks, wearable and ubiquitous computing, brain-computer interfaces (BCI), and ambient intelligence will be of special interest. The objective of the workshop is to provide an overview of the main challenges, relevant applications and open opportunities in Assistance and Service Robotics in a Human Environment.

Achieving autonomy remains a fundamental need that contributes to the individual’s wellness and well-being. While important advances have been made in this field, further work is needed for full independence. The smart wheelchair is a perfect example to illustrate the difficulty to design a mobility aid system which match users' needs and abilities. This 2018 edition of the workshop will be then particularly concerned with assistive devices for mobility such as autonomous wheelchairs.

In addition, in the context of physical rehabilitation, understanding and interpreting user intentions to bridge the gap between humans and machines, is an emergent field of research. If assistive robots can be seen as a tool to retrieve or maintain cognitive and/or motor abilities, one could take advantage of the proposed assistive tool to enhance the user Quality of Experience by means of dedicated feedbacks. Indeed, adapted interfaces should improve the understanding of users as they can be seen as a communication channel between the user and the robotic controller. Human-oriented design of assistive technologies is still in its infancy, especially in the field of handicap and this workshop will encourage discussions in this field.

In the continuity of the previous editions held at IROS'12, IROS'13, IROS'14, IROS'15, IROS'16 and IROS'17, this workshop will consist of four sessions with two to four keynote speakers:

Session 1: Navigating among humans

Session 2: Physical human-robot interaction and collaboration

Session 3: Robots for daily activities: towards socially-capable robots

Session 4: Robotics for elderly and frail people

This workshop is endorsed by the following IEEE RAS Technical Committees:

This workshop is also supported by the EU project ADAPT


The solicited papers address, but are not limited to, the following topics:

  • Assistive robots for individuals with disabilities
  • Robot navigation among humans
  • Interaction-aware motion planning
  • Control for human-robot physical interaction
  • Compliant robotics
  • Safety assessment for robot navigation in crowds
  • Ethics for assistive robotics
  • User-centered design of robotic system
  • Accessibility
  • Shared control
  • Human-oriented design of robots
  • Brain-computer and neural interfaces
  • Smart wheelchairs
  • Ethical issues for assistive robotics

Five to six contributed papers (2 pages) will be accepted based on their quality, originality, and relevance to the workshop. Authors of selected papers will be asked to submit extended versions of their papers for a special issue in a journal. Submitted papers should not be under consideration for publication anywhere else. Submission of papers and review process will be handled through EasyChair conference management system. Submissions should follow the IROS format.

  • Papers submission deadline: July 7th, 2018 July 12th, 2018
  • Acceptance Notification: July 22nd, 2018
  • Camera Ready deadline: September 1st, 2018
  • Registration deadline: see IROS web site
  • Workshop date: October 1st, 2018