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Human-centered design of human-robot-interaction; Project 3 "Human-Robot-Interaction and assistance systems - task allocation in Smart Factories"

Project number: F 2418 Institution: Federal Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (BAuA) Status: Completed Project


In the course of the digitalization of the working world, new technologies, assistance systems and especially interacting robots are introduced into industrial production settings. By using such technologies in smart factories, the profitability of small-scale production can be increased. In addition to this, workers can be supported by assistance systems and robots - also in managing increasing complexity.

New forms of cooperation like human-robot interaction (HRI) require new, dynamically adaptable forms of task allocation between humans and robots. The goal of the project was to determine how allocation processes affect people psychologically and how, on this basis, allocation processes can be designed to contribute to humane working conditions.

Hence, we examined the existing literature in the field and empirically tested the effect of different allocation processes on behavior, affect and cognition of people working together with a robot. For this, a theoretical model was developed. An online experiment showed that self-determined task allocation is connected to more positive effects than other-directed allocation. A follow-up laboratory experiment demonstrated positive effects on experienced autonomy and control when workers are more involved in the task allocation process.

The human-centred design of task allocation processes can be a crucial step to leverage synergies between humans and robots and to realise safe and successful cooperation in future-oriented scenarios. The project established the scientific basis and provided first empirical evidence for this purpose.



Division 2 "Products and Work Systems"

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