Long-Term Interactions with Empathic Robots: Evaluating Perceived Support in Children

  • Iolanda Leite
  • Ginevra Castellano
  • André Pereira
  • Carlos Martinho
  • Ana Paiva
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 7621)


In this paper, we present an empathic model for social robots that aim to interact with children for extended periods of time. The application of this model to a scenario in which a social robot plays chess with children is described. To evaluate the proposed model, we ran a long-term study in an elementary school and measured children’s perception of social support. Our results suggest that children felt supported by the robot in a similar extent to what, in general, children feel supported by their peers. Another interesting finding was that the most valued form of social support was esteem support (reinforcing the other person’s sense of competence and self-esteem).


Empathy Social Support Long-term Interaction 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Iolanda Leite
    • 1
  • Ginevra Castellano
    • 2
  • André Pereira
    • 1
  • Carlos Martinho
    • 1
  • Ana Paiva
    • 1
  1. 1.INESC-ID and Instituto Superior TécnicoTechnical University of LisbonOeirasPortugal
  2. 2.HCI Centre, School of Electronic, Electrical and Computer EngineeringUniversity of BirminghamUnited Kingdom

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