My research goal is to achieve long-term human-agent robot teamwork, which requires agents and robots with empathy and interactive intelligence. I am aiming for co-evolution between humans, agents and robots to a sustainable use of our planet with a comfortable life style for all. All my research lines adopt a value-sensitive approach to develop intelligent agents that can interact with their users in value-conflicting situations when also meta-values no longer solve the situation.

Building on a background in logic and multi-agent simulation, my research focusses on intelligent support systems for decision making in complex situations. I initiated and continuously develop GENIUS, the internationally most used platform to support research into negotiation mechanisms, protocols, and intelligent negotiating agents. The Pocket Negotiator is currently the only general purpose negotiation support system that assists users in all phases of the negotiation process. Click here for an  experimental version of the Pocket Negotiator.

In my vision, agents and robots should explain their behaviour and decisions in a context-sensitive and engaging way. Our research on the embedding of artificial intelligence in social settings has focused on negotiation in various forms: automated negotiation, and negotiation support. For all applications in which agents and robots have to work closely together with humans, agents and robots must be able to deliberate about the social situation to determine their actions, and be able to form a mental model about their human team mates. I intend to support both agents and humans in their deliberative processes. Mass deliberation support will help citizens and policy makers to take informed decisions in democratic processes. In this endeavour, my aim is to engage people in lasting interests in the policy making of their environments.

In Delft, I work with an interdisciplinary team to create synergy between humans and technology by understanding, shaping and using fundamentals of intelligence and interaction. My initiative to start the annual international Automated Negotiating Agents Competition (ANAC) has made a significant change to the research in automated negotiation agents.

Application areas

Over the years I learned most about the following application areas

  • Negotiation
  • Trade
  • Lifestyle and Personalized Care
  • Cybernetic Incident Management & International Peace Keeping Missions
  • Animal behaviour