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“Should We Allow Him to Pass?” Increasing Cooperation Between Truck Drivers Using Anthropomorphism

Part of the Advances in Intelligent Systems and Computing book series (AISC,volume 964)


Studies from various disciplines have showed, that adding human characteristics to non-human object improves the interaction between human and this object. It can be assumed that human-like technologies have a positive influence on driver-vehicle interaction as well. This study investigates the potential to increase the willingness of truck drivers to cooperate during overtaking scenarios using anthropomorphized interfaces. Therefore, a driving simulator experiment was conducted with truck drivers. Two conversational agents have been developed, which differ in their degree of human characteristics. They supported the truck driver in the initiation and during the overtaking manoeuver by clarifying a willingness to cooperate and communicating the status of the overtaking process. The results indicated no significance in the drivers’ willingness to cooperate in interaction with the two agents. However, the perceived human likeness increased through the addition of emotionality and identity. More than half of the drivers were in favor of the more human-like agent.


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    local: up to 50 km, regional: 50–150 km and long haul transport: more than 150 km per day.


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The Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy has funded the research leading to these results within the project IMAGinE: Intelligent manoeuver automation – cooperative hazard avoidance in real time.

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As first author, Jana Fank initiated the research idea of this article and contributed to the study development and data analysis. Leon Santen contributed main parts to the study design and data collection. Christian Knies contributed major knowledge to the study design and simulation. Frank Diermeyer made an essential contribution to the conception of the research project. He revised the paper critically with regard to important content and gave final approval of the version to be published. Special thanks goes to Anja Schweiger who contributed to data collection.

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Correspondence to Jana Fank .

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Fank, J., Santen, L., Knies, C., Diermeyer, F. (2020). “Should We Allow Him to Pass?” Increasing Cooperation Between Truck Drivers Using Anthropomorphism. In: Stanton, N. (eds) Advances in Human Factors of Transportation. AHFE 2019. Advances in Intelligent Systems and Computing, vol 964. Springer, Cham.

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  • Print ISBN: 978-3-030-20502-7

  • Online ISBN: 978-3-030-20503-4

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