In so-called interactive biorobotics, robotic models of living systems interact with animals in controlled experimental settings. By observing how the focal animal reacts to the stimuli delivered by the robot, one tests hypotheses concerning the determinants of animal behaviour in social contexts. Building on previous methodological reconstructions of interactive biorobotics, this article reflects on the claim, made by several authors in the field, that this strategy may enable one to explain social phenomena in animals. The answer offered here will be negative: interactive biorobotics does not contribute to the explanation of social phenomena. However, it may greatly contribute to the study of animal behaviour by creating social phenomena in the sense discussed by Ian Hacking, i.e. by precisely defining new phenomena to be explained. It will be also suggested that interactive biorobotics can be combined with more classical robot-based approaches to the study of living systems, leading to a so-called simulation-interactive strategy for the mechanistic explanation of social behaviour in animals.

Datteri, E. (2021). The creation of phenomena in interactive biorobotics. BIOLOGICAL CYBERNETICS, 115(6), 629-642 [10.1007/s00422-021-00900-x].

The creation of phenomena in interactive biorobotics

Datteri, E
2021

Abstract

In so-called interactive biorobotics, robotic models of living systems interact with animals in controlled experimental settings. By observing how the focal animal reacts to the stimuli delivered by the robot, one tests hypotheses concerning the determinants of animal behaviour in social contexts. Building on previous methodological reconstructions of interactive biorobotics, this article reflects on the claim, made by several authors in the field, that this strategy may enable one to explain social phenomena in animals. The answer offered here will be negative: interactive biorobotics does not contribute to the explanation of social phenomena. However, it may greatly contribute to the study of animal behaviour by creating social phenomena in the sense discussed by Ian Hacking, i.e. by precisely defining new phenomena to be explained. It will be also suggested that interactive biorobotics can be combined with more classical robot-based approaches to the study of living systems, leading to a so-called simulation-interactive strategy for the mechanistic explanation of social behaviour in animals.
No
Articolo in rivista - Articolo scientifico
Scientifica
Explanation; Interactive biorobotics; Social behaviour; Understanding;
English
629
642
14
Hybrid Gold Open Access• Green Open Access
Datteri, E. (2021). The creation of phenomena in interactive biorobotics. BIOLOGICAL CYBERNETICS, 115(6), 629-642 [10.1007/s00422-021-00900-x].
Datteri, E
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/10281/332870
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