Information for students, faculty and staff regarding COVID-19. (Updated: 17 September 2020)

Skip to content
printicon

Digital Companions as Social Actors: Employing Socially Intelligent Systems for Managing Stress and Improving Emotional Wellbeing

Research project The aim of this project is to increase the understanding of the impact of intelligent digital companions as social actors on human activity.

We will in particular investigate the impact from the perspectives of purposeful activity, social order and roles, motivation, empowerment, emotional wellbeing and sustainable behaviour change in daily life for improving health. We will focus on digital companions involved in managing stress-related exhaustion in daily activities, which is a rapidly growing area of concern in society.

Head of project

Project overview

Project period:

2020-01-01 2024-12-31

Participating departments and units at Umeå University

Department of Computing Science, Department of Informatics, Department of Psychology

Research subject

Computing science

External funding

Marianne and Marcus Wallenberg Foundation

Project description

The problems that will be addressed fall within complementary domains of research and consequently requires a multi-disciplinary approach. The main research questions are

i) how can systemic theories about human behaviour and motivation inform and advance the knowledge models, reasoning models and automated learning of the digital companion?

ii) what are the effects on the individual participating in verbal and non-verbal dialogues with a socially intelligent digital companion that adapts to the individual and the current situation?

iii) what do collaboration and cooperation with the digital companion mean to the individual and how to balance initiative, autonomy, responsibility and conflicting goals?

Expected outcomes include increased understanding of how socially intelligent digital companions may affect the human’s emotional wellbeing and the companion’s potential role in managing conflicting goals and motives relating to stress in daily activities.

External funding