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Personalized Companion Robot for Open-Domain Dialogue in Long-Term Elderly Care

About the project
June 2022 – June 2024
With more than 1 billion people over 60 worldwide, creating technology that supports the aged to live independently for longer by assisting them in everyday tasks became essential. While companion robots are aimed toward this need, current technology falls short in maintaining engagement over long-term interactions. Among the reasons is the inability to learn from users and adapt, known as lifelong learning, especially in open-domain dialogue that is not limited to any topic.

This project aims to develop a long‐term memory model for open‐domain dialogue such that a robot can learn and recall a person’s attributes, preferences, and shared history to provide personalized assistance in a variety of tasks, such as performing preferred activities, adaptive collaboration in chores, and providing reminders based on their schedule and needs.

About the Digital Futures Postdoc Fellow
Bahar Irfan is a Postdoctoral researcher at KTH Digital Futures. Her research focuses on creating personal robots that can continually learn and adapt to assist everyday life. Previously, she was a Research and Development Associate at Evinoks Service Equipment Industry and Commerce Inc., developing customizable software for industrial robots and smart buffets. Before that, she worked as an R&D Lab Associate at Disney Research Los Angeles on emotional language adaptation in multiparty interactions.

She has a diverse background in robotics, from personalization in long-term human-robot interaction during her PhD at the University of Plymouth and SoftBank Robotics Europe as a Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions fellow to user-centred task planning for household robotics during her MSc in computer engineering, and building robots for BSc in mechanical engineering at Boğaziçi University.

Main supervisor
Gabriel Skantze, Professor in Speech Communication and Technology at KTH

Co-supervisor
Sanna Kouppamäki, Assistant Professor, Division of Technology in Health Care at KTH

Contacts

Picture of Bahar Irfan

Bahar Irfan

Digital Futures Postdoctoral Fellow, Postdoc project: Personalized Companion Robot for Open-Domain Dialogue in Long-Term Elderly Care

birfan@kth.se
Picture of Gabriel Skantze

Gabriel Skantze

Professor in Speech Communication and Technology at KTH, Supervisor for Postdoc project Personalized Companion Robot for Open-Domain Dialogue in Long-Term Elderly Care, Digital Futures Faculty

+46 8 790 78 74
skantze@kth.se
Picture of Sanna Kuoppamäki

Sanna Kuoppamäki

Assistant Professor, Division of Technology in Health Care at KTH, Co-PI of research project Advanced Adaptive Intelligent Systems (AAIS), Co-Supervisor for Postdoc project Personalized Companion Robot for Open-Domain Dialogue in Long-Term Elderly Care, Digital Futures Faculty

+46 8 790 97 31
sannaku@kth.se