Planning Human-Robot Interaction for Social Navigation in Crowded Environments

Araceli Vega, Luis J. Manso, Ramon Cintas, Pedro Nunez

Research output: Chapter in Book/Published conference outputConference publication


Navigation is one of the crucial skills autonomous robots
need to perform daily tasks, and many of the rest depend on it. In
this paper, we argue that this dependence goes both ways in advanced
social autonomous robots. Manipulation, perception, and most impor-
tantly human-robot interaction are some of the skills in which navigation
might rely on. This paper is focused on the dependence on human-robot
interaction and uses two particular scenarios of growing complexity as
an example: asking for collaboration to enter a room and asking for per-
mission to navigate between two people which are talking. In the first
scenario, the person physically blocks the path to the adjacent room,
so it would be impossible for the robot to navigate to such room. Even
though in the second scenario the people talking do not block the path
to the other room, from a social point of view, interrupting an ongoing
conversation without noticing is undesirable. In this paper we propose a
navigation planning domain and a set of software agents which allow the
robot to navigate in crowded environments in a socially acceptable way,
asking for cooperation or permission when necessary. The paper provides
quantitative experimental results including social navigation metrics and
the results of a Likert-scale satisfaction questionnaire.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAdvances in Physical Agents
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of the 19th International Workshop of Physical Agents
EditorsRaquel Fuentetaja
Place of PublicationSwitzerland
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-319-99885-5
ISBN (Print)978-3-319-99884-8
Publication statusPublished - 22 Nov 2018
Event19th International Workshop of Physical Agents (WAF 2018) - Madrid, Spain
Duration: 22 Nov 201823 Nov 2018

Publication series

NameAdvances in Intelligent Systems and Computing


Conference19th International Workshop of Physical Agents (WAF 2018)


  • planning
  • robotics
  • social navigation
  • HRI


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