Hokkaido University
Center for Human Nature,
Artificial Intelligence,
and Neuroscience


【中止になりました】第38回 CHAIN Seminar: Anna Ciaunica “Embodied Joint Agency in Humans and Artificial Agents”

日時 2024年1月16日(火)14:00-15:30
場所 北海道大学オープンイノベーションハブ「エンレイソウ」第一会議室
言語 英語
開催方法 ハイブリッド(オンラインのみ要登録)

第38回のCHAIN Seminarはリスボン大学(ポルトガル科学哲学センター)のAnna Ciaunica先生に “Embodied Joint Agency in Humans and Artificial Agents” と題して講演をしていただきます。

オンライン参加の方へ: Zoomの登録はこちらからお願いします。



Anna Ciaunica

Embodied Joint Agency in Humans and Artificial Agents


Humans are highly social beings and Artificial Intelligence-based technologies such as robots are developing at an unprecedented speed, considerably impacting our social lives. Previous work demonstrated that humans promptly attribute intentionality, agency and embodiment to artificial agents such as robots, virtual characters and chatbots. However, the impact of interacting with artificial others on the human sense of self and embodiment is less understood.

Here I will look at the relationship between the sense of self, the sense of body ownership, and joint agency in Human/Human versus Human/Humanoid Robot Interactions (HRI). It examines the effect of interacting with Humanoid Robots versus Humans on the Human embodiment and human sense of self. The sense of self refers to the ability to experience and identify oneself as an individual body, distinct from the world and others (Gallagher, 2000; see Qin et al., 2020 for a recent review). A recent study illustrated a higher sense of joint agency in cooperative tasks (Sebanz et al. 2003) performed in dyads of Humans and Humanoid Robots vs. Humans and non-Humanoid robots (Sahaï et al. 2022). This suggests that the embodiment of a co-agent seems crucial for constituting humans’ sense of joint agency in joint tasks. Yet, the question of how Human-Human versus Human-Humanoid robot interactions affect human embodiment and human sense of self is less well understood. Here I will examine the relationship between feelings of Depersonalisation (DP henceforth) – i.e. the feeling of being detached from one’s self and body (Sierra and Berrios 1997) – and joint agency in Human/Human versus Human/ Humanoid Robot (Pepper) interactions. Specifically, we will examine whether feelings of (dis)-connectedness from one’s self and body impact the way people relate to humans versus artificial agents.

A better understanding of the embodied roots of social interactions with artificial others may shed light on fundamental features of social cognition embodiment, and sense of self in humans.

● Gallagher, S. (2000). Philosophical conceptions of the self: implications for cognitive science. Trends in cognitive sciences, 4(1), 14-21.
● Qin, P., Wang, M., & Northoff, G. (2020). Linking bodily, environmental and mental states in the self—A three-level model based on a meta-analysis. Neuroscience & biobehavioral reviews, 115, 77-95.
● Sahaï, A., Caspar, E., De Beir, A., Grynszpan, O., Pacherie, E., & Berberian, B. (2022). Modulations of one’s sense of agency during human–machine interactions: a behavioural study using a full humanoid robot. Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, 17470218221095841.
● Sebanz, N., Knoblich, G., & Prinz, W. (2003). Representing others' actions: just like one's own?. Cognition.
● Sierra M. & Berrios GE. (1998). Depersonalization: neurobiological perspectives. Biological Psychiatry, 44: 898–908.
● Sierra, M., & Berrios, G. E. (2000). The Cambridge Despersonalization Scale: A new instrument for the measurement of despersonalization. Psychiatry Research, 93: 153–164.


Dr. Anna Ciaunica is a Principal Investigator at the Centre for Philosophy of Science, University of Lisbon, Portugal; and Research Associate at the Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience, University College London, the UK. Dr. Ciaunica is currently Principal Investigator on three interdisciplinary projects looking at the relationship between self-awareness, embodiment and social interactions in humans and artificial agents. Her approach is highly interdisciplinary, using methods from philosophy, experimental psychology, cognitive neuroscience, phenomenology and arts. She is also coordinator of the Network for Embodied Consciousness, Technology and the Arts (NECTArs) – a collaborative platform bringing together artists, researchers, stakeholders, policy makers and people with lived experiences, aiming at fostering creative solutions to timely questions such as self-consciousness and (dis)embodiment in our hyper-digitalized and hyper-connected world.