Meet the philosophers, roboticists, authors, and journalists who make up our executive board!
Meet our co-founders: ethicist Aimee van Wynsberghe (TU Delft) and roboticist Noel Sharkey (Sheffield)
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What We Do
To promote the responsible design, development, implementation, and policy of robots embedded in our society. Our goal is to influence the future development and application of robotics such that it embeds the standards, methods, principles, capabilities, and policy points, as they relate to the responsible design and deployment of robotic systems.
We see both the definition of responsible robotics and the means for achieving it as on-going tasks that will evolve alongside the technology of robotics. Of great significance is that the FRR aims to be proactive and assistive to the robotics industry in a way that allows for the ethical, legal, and societal issues to be incorporated into design, development, and policy.
FRR is a not-for-profit organisation founded on the belief that robots are only as responsible as the humans who build and use them and it is they who are accountable. Our goal is to foster conversation about the human purposes that are implicit in the design of robots to ensure that these human purposes are made as transparent as possible and thus, open for challenge and debate. In robots, we not only project who we are but we come to affect who we will become. These are not just technical matters. They need to be made accessible to the broadest range of citizens and stakeholders. To that end we will:
- Engage with policy makers at both the international and national level to advocate the creation of new policies that consider potential societal risks of the forthcoming robotics applications. We aim to ensure that societal responsibility and accountability are high on policy agendas and that new regulations are sensitive to responsible innovation.
- Create multidisciplinary grouping of designers and developers of robotics technology with ethical, legal and societal scholars to foster responsible design and research methods, robot capabilities, delegation of responsibilities, implementation strategies, and policy guidelines.
- Work together as a group to reflect and explore what it means to be ‘responsible’ in robotics, as the field evolves. There may be some applications that we deem irresponsible by their nature.
- Organize and hold workshops to help raise awareness about ethical, legal and societal issues in robotics and the various ways in which these issues can best be tackled.
- Engage with the general public through workshops and events. Raise awareness about responsible robotics through the publication of magazine articles and interviews with radio and television personalities.
The FRR is the only foundation dedicated to responsible robotics that relies heavily on the humanities to work together with robot designers and developers. We are a not-for-profit foudnation established in Twente, the Netherlands. The FRR is comprised of ethicists, philosophers, legal scholars, roboticists, journalists, scientists, companies and others interested in investing in our goals.
The FRR has an Executive Advisory Board comprised of International world leading thinkers in technology and ethics. The board will offer their advice to the Founders in order to help shape the future direction of the society. A separate organization committee, comprised of nominated members that are voted-in once a year (by the members of the foundation) after vetting, and will handle the day-to-day operations of the SRR to make sure it functions as planned (e.g. financial, membership and website matters).
The FRR works closely with the 3TU Center for Ethics and Technology in the Netherlands and was established through a working group at the center in May 2015. 3TU has provided the initial support to get the FRR up and running and we are very grateful to have it!
FRR Members in the News
The Engineer published a follow-up poll to FRR Co-Founders Aimee van Wynsberghe and Noel Sharkey's recent article. The poll asked readers "How should society cope with increasing use of robots?" You can find the results of the poll...read more
FRR Co-Founders Aimee van Wynsberghe and Noel Sharkey recently authored an opinion piece in The Engineer. Touching on many points, the two present an overview of the many challenges we face as a society, ranging from universal basic income and employment issues to a...read more
In June 2016, FRR member Rikke Berggreen was interviewed by Robotics Trends on her work with robots in the European education system. In the article, "How Robots Are Impacting Education in Europe", Berggreen discusses her experiences introducing robots into classrooms...read more