Archive | September, 2013

Call for Papers – We Robot 2014: Risks & Opportunities – April 4 & 5 in Coral Gables, FL

We invite submissions for “We Robot 2014: Risks & Opportunities” – a conference at the intersection of the law, policy, and technology of robotics, to be held in Coral Gables, Florida on April 4-5, 2014. We Robot is now in its third year, returning to the University of Miami School of Law after being hosted by Stanford Law School last April. The conference web site is at http://robots.law.miami.edu/2014.

We Robot 2014 seeks contributions by academics, practitioners, and developers in the form of scholarly papers or presentations of relevant projects. We invite your reports from the front lines of robot design and development, and invite contributions for works-in-progress sessions. Through this interdisciplinary gathering, we are encouraging conversations between the people designing, building, and deploying robots, and the people who design or influence the legal and social structures in which robots will operate. We particularly encourage contributions resulting from interdisciplinary collaborations, such as those between legal or policy scholars and roboticists.

Robotics is becoming a transformative technology that presents many legal and social challenges. This conference will build on existing scholarship that explores how the increasing sophistication and autonomous decision-making capabilities of robots and their widespread deployment everywhere from the home, to hospitals, to public spaces, and even to the battlefield disrupts existing legal regimes or requires rethinking of various policy issues.

Scholarly Papers

Topics of interest for the scholarly paper portion of the conference include but are not limited to:

  • Risks and opportunities of robot deployment in the workplace, the home, and other contexts where robots and humans work side-by-side.
  • Issues related to software-only systems such as automated trading agents.
  • Regulatory and licensing issues raised by robots in the home, the office, in public spaces (e.g. roads), and in specialized environments such as hospitals.
  • Design of legal rules that will strike the right balance between encouraging innovation and safety, particularly in the context of autonomous robots.
  • Issues of legal or moral responsibility, e.g. relating to autonomous robots or robots capable of exhibiting emergent behavior.
  • Usage of robots in public safety and military contexts.
  • Privacy issues relating to data collection by robots, either built for that purpose or incidental to other tasks.
  • Intellectual property challenges relating to robotics as a nascent industry, to works or inventions created by robots, or otherwise peculiar to robotics.
  • Issues arising from automation of professional tasks such as unauthorized practice of law or medicine.
  • How legal scholars should think about robots, and how roboticists should think about the legal code.

These are only some examples of relevant topics. We are very interested in papers on other topics driven by actual or probable robot deployments. The purpose of this conference is to help set a research agenda relating to the deployment of robots in society, to inform policy-makers of the issues, and to help design legal rules that will maximize opportunities and minimize risks arising from the increased deployment of robots in society.

Discussants

We also invite expressions of interest from potential discussants. Every paper accepted will be assigned a discussant whose job it will be to present and comment on the paper. These presentations will be very brief (no more than 10 minutes) and will consist mostly of making a few points critiquing the author’s paper to kick off the conversation. Authors will then respond briefly (no more than 5 minutes). The rest of the session will consist of a group discussion about the paper moderated by the discussant. Attendees will need to read papers in advance to understand and participate in each discussion.

Works-in-Progress Presentations

Unlike the scholarly papers, proposals for the works-in-progress presentations may be purely descriptive and designer/builders will be asked to present their work themselves. We’d like to hear about your latest innovations – and what’s on the drawing board for the next generations of robots as well, or about legal and policy issues you have encountered in the design or deploy process.

How to Submit Your Proposal

Please send a 1-3 page abstract outlining your proposed paper, and a c.v. of the author(s).

We Robot 2014 will be hosted by the University of Miami School of Law, Coral Gables, Florida on April 4-5, 2014. Venue details are at the conference web site.

We anticipate paying reasonable round-trip domestic coach airfare and providing hotel accommodation for presenters and discussants.

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A. Michael Froomkin – Program Committee Chair

Michael_Froomkin_1c-smA. Michael Froomkin, the Chair of the Program Committee is the Laurie Silvers & Mitchell Rubenstein Distinguished Professor of Law at the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Florida, specializing in Internet Law and Administrative Law. He founded We Robot in 2012.

Prof. Froomkin is a founder-editor of the online law review Jotwell, The Journal of Things We Like (Lots). He is also a founder of ICANNWatch, and serves on the Editorial Board of Information, Communication & Society and of I/S: A Journal of Law and Policy for the Information Society. He is on the Advisory Boards of several organizations including the Electronic Frontier Foundation and the Electronic Privacy Information Center. Professor Froomkin writes primarily about privacy, Internet governance, electronic democracy, and cryptography.

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Ryan Calo – Program Committee

Calo-Ryan-133x200Ryan Calo is Assistant Professor of Law at the University of Washington School of Law. Professor Calo researches the intersection of law and emerging technology, with an emphasis on robotics and the Internet. His work on drones, driverless cars, privacy, and other topics has appeared in law reviews and major news outlets, including the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and NPR. Professor Calo has also testified before the full Judiciary Committee of the United States Senate. 

Professor Calo serves on numerous advisory boards, including the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC), the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), the Future of Privacy Forum, and National Robotics Week. Professor Calo co-chairs the Robotics and Artificial Intelligence committee of the American Bar Association and is a member of the Executive Committee of the American Association of Law Schools (AALS) Section on Internet and Computer Law.

Professor Calo previously served as a director at the Stanford Law School Center for Internet and Society (CIS) where he remains an Affiliate Scholar. He also worked as an associate in the Washington, D.C. office of Covington & Burling LLP and clerked for the Honorable R. Guy Cole on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. Prior to law school at the University of Michigan, Professor Calo investigated allegations of police misconduct in New York City.

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Ian Kerr – Program Committee

ian ottawa u photo-2Ian Kerr holds the Canada Research Chair in Ethics, Law & Technology at the University of Ottawa, Faculty of Law, with cross appointments in Medicine, Philosophy and Information Studies. He has advised various Canadian agencies on legal policy for online activities, and has served as a Canadian delegate to the United Nations¹ Special Working Group on e-Commerce, a project of the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law. Dr. Kerr¹s research lies at the intersection of ethics, law and technology and is currently focused on two broad themes: (i) Privacy and Surveillance; and (ii) Human-Machine Mergers.

Building on his recent Oxford University Press book, Lessons from the Identity Trail, his ongoing privacy work focuses on the interplay between emerging public and private sector surveillance technologies, civil liberties and human rights. His recent research on robotics and implantable devices examines legal and ethical implications of emerging technologies in the military sector, health and beyond.

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F. Daniel Siciliano – Program Committee

dan_sicilianoF. Daniel Siciliano is the Faculty Director of the Arthur and Toni Rembe Rock Center for Corporate Governance at Stanford Law School. He is a legal scholar and entrepreneur with expertise in corporate governance, corporate finance, and immigration law. At Stanford Law he is also associate dean for executive education and special programs and co-director of Stanford’s Directors’ College. He is also the co-originator of the OSCGRS (Open Source Corporate Governance Reporting System) Project.

Siciliano is the senior research fellow with the Immigration Policy Center and a frequent commentator on the long-term economic impact of immigration policy and reform. His work has included expert testimony in front of both the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives. Prior to joining Stanford Law School, Siciliano co-founded and served as executive director of the Immigration Outreach Center in Phoenix, Arizona. He has launched and led several successful businesses, including LawLogix Group—named three times to the Inc. 500/5000 list. Siciliano serves as a governance consultant and trainer to board directors of several Fortune 500 companies and is a member of the Academic Council of Corporate Board Member magazine.

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William Smart – Program Committee

wdsBill Smart is a roboticist who is interested in how robots and people can work together effectively and efficiently. A computer scientist by training, he is currently an Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Oregon State University. He holds a Ph.D. and Sc.M. in Computer Science from Brown University, an M.Sc. in Intelligent Robotics from the University of Edinburgh, and a B.Sc. (hons) in Computer Science from the University of Dundee. His research interests span the areas of human-robot interaction, machine learning, technology and the arts, and brain-computer interfaces.

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Leila Takayama – Program Committee

leila Takayam PhotoLeila Takayama is a senior researcher at Google[x], a Google lab that aims for moonshots. She is also a Young Global Leader and Global Agenda Council Members for the area of robotics and smart devices. In 2012, she was named a TR35 winner (Technology Review’s Top 35 innovators under 35) and one of the 100 most creative people in business by Fast Company.

Prior to joining Google[x], Leila was a research scientist and area manager for human-robot interaction at Willow Garage. With a background in Cognitive Science, Psychology, and Human-Computer Interaction, she examines human encounters with new technologies. Dr. Takayama completed her PhD in Communication at Stanford University in June 2008, advised by Professor Clifford Nass. She also holds a PhD minor in Psychology from Stanford, MA in Communication from Stanford, and BAs in Psychology and Cognitive Science from UC Berkeley (2003). During her graduate studies, she was a research assistant in the User Interface Research (UIR) group at Palo Alto Research Center (PARC).

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Holly Yanco – Program Committee

yanco-head-shotHolly Yanco is a Professor of Computer Science at the University of Massachusetts Lowell, where she founded and directs the Robotics Laboratory.  She is also the Director of the New England Robotics Validation and Experimentation (NERVE) Center.  Her research addresses the design and evaluation of human-robot interaction, from autonomy levels to interaction design, in application domains ranging from assistive technology to search and rescue.

Yanco’s research has been funded by the National Science Foundation, including a Career Award, the Army Research Office, DARPA, and the National Institute of Standards and Technology.  She is a Senior Member of the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence (AAAI). Yanco is currently co-chair of the Steering Committee of the ACM/IEEE Human-Robot Interaction Conference and Journal and served on the Executive Council of AAAI from 2006-2009.  Yanco has a PhD and MS in Computer Science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and a BA in Computer Science and Philosophy from Wellesley College.

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