Toward a Framework for Levels of Robot Autonomy in Human-Robot Interaction

Jenay M Beer, Arthur D Fisk, Wendy A Rogers


Autonomy is a critical construct related to human-robot interaction (HRI) and varies widely across robot platforms. Levels of robot autonomy (LORA), ranging from teleoperation to fully autonomous systems, influence the way in which humans and robots interact with one another. Thus, there is a need to understand HRI by identifying variables that influence—and are influenced by—robot autonomy. Our overarching goal is to develop a framework for LORA in HRI. To reach this goal, our framework draws links between HRI and human-automation interaction, a field with a long history of studying and understanding human-related variables. The construct of autonomy is reviewed and redefined within the context of HRI. Additionally, this framework proposes a process for determining a robot’s autonomy level by categorizing autonomy along a 10-point taxonomy. The framework is intended to be treated as a guideline for determining autonomy, categorizing the LORA along a qualitative taxonomy and considering HRI variables (e.g., acceptance, situation awareness, reliability) that may be influenced by the LORA


human-robot interaction, automation, autonomy, levels of robot autonomy, framework

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