Discussing robot crime interviewers for children’s forensic testimonies: a relatively new field for investigation

Abstract

The aim of this paper was to provide a background review to assist experimental, survey and field studies that will start emerging on the effects of robot crime interviewers on children and on forensic investigations. The paper captures topics such as describing how, historically, technology has determined our legal systems, criminal investigations and, of course, children’s forensic testimonies. It discusses studies that have already explored the idea of robot crime interviewers in the context of relevant ethical concerns as well as experimental studies on the different ways in which children react in an interview elicited by a human compared with a robot interviewer. The article continues by suggesting research methodological designs that could benefit studies exploring robot interviews with children such as a robot exposure phase prior to the main data collection, the robot’s “personality” and the instructions given to children for semi-autonomous interviewers. This is based on the available literature on human–robot interactions. There is an attempt here to provide a literature review and methodological suggestions to form future studies on robot crime interviewers.

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Acknowledgments

I would like to thank Prof. Tony Prescott, Dr. Amanda Sharkey and Dr. Mark Blades from the University of Sheffield for their support.

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Correspondence to Marilena Kyriakidou.

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Kyriakidou, M. Discussing robot crime interviewers for children’s forensic testimonies: a relatively new field for investigation. AI & Soc 31, 121–126 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00146-014-0566-3

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Keywords

  • Robot crime interviewers
  • Children’s testimonies
  • Robots
  • Forensic interviews
  • Children–robot interactions
  • Human–robot interactions