Ethics as enacted through movement – shaping and being shaped by autonomous systems

When humans and drones cooperate on various tasks, it can also have an impact on everyday ethics. In a project led by Kristina Höök, researchers from KTH and Stockholm University will investigate how drones can affect people’s everyday lives.

Drones are constantly assigned to more and new areas of use. These include surveillance and rescue services as well as brand new areas, such as dance and stage art.

A common feature of all these applications is the assumption of an interaction between human and drone. Drones can fly higher, move further and go to places that the human is unable to reach. Through the drones, the human is in a sense given superhuman abilities.

When drones and humans interact, behaviour and movements must be adapted so that the drone can register and respond to the human movement. Depending on how the drone is designed, it will encourage certain movements, experiences and social expressions among people.

This can in turn affect practical ethics in everyday life and how humans relate to one another.

In order to increase the knowledge on interaction between drones and humans, the researchers will investigate an opera – The Aerial Robotic Choir – where dancers and drones are on stage together, as well as activities in various workplaces, including firefighters using drones in their work.

Project members:
Airi Lampinen, Stockholm University

1 January 2020 until 31 August 2024
Principal investigator
Funding
Marianne and Marcus Wallenberg Foundation