Mark Neerincx is giving a keynote at spring conference

Virtual mental health assistants: personal and eager to learn

Nieuws - 16 juni 2020 - Communication

Mark Neerincx is giving a keynote presentation at the Spring Conference of the Dutch Association of Psychiatry on June 17th. He will discuss the development of virtual or physical agents, like avatars and robots, that gradually enter into a symbiotic relationship with the people in (“blended”) healthcare systems (i.e., clients, doctors, caregivers, …). The proposition is that the development of symbiotic, artificial and human, intelligence can advance healthcare substantially. In nature, symbiosis advances the overall performance and resilience of the concerning species. We propose to aim at mutualistic human-agent symbiosis that is beneficial for both the human and the agent (i.e., both the human and the agent advance their capabilities for their joint objective). Two types of mutualistic symbiosis are being presented and exemplified: Partnering and merging. First, recent research on robotic and virtual partners have shown that they can improve healthcare for a lifestyle-related disease (diabetes management) and for mental health (prevention and treatment of PTSD). Second, merging of simulated thoughts (“inner voices”) in Virtual-Reality training shows to evoke learning experiences that can support the development of desired cognitions and behaviors. The requirement of mutualism for these two types of symbiosis, sets three new challenges for hybrid (symbiotic) intelligence: How to establish (1) Fairness and Responsibility, (2) Transparency and Explainability, and (3) Active Co-learning over the Entire Lifecycle of the human-agent system.

More information about the program: