[robotics-worldwide] [Meetings] Call for participation - Mini-symposium on military robotics - Wed. Nov. 6th
ludovic.righetti at tuebingen.mpg.de
Sat Nov 2 08:34:37 PDT 2013
It is our pleasure to invite you to join us to the following symposium
next week on military robotics just a 5min walk from IROS venue (the
symposium is not part of IROS).
Mini-symposium on Military Applications of Robotics
*Location and time*
TOC Ariake, Room WG201 (5 min walk from IROS venue, see map at
19:30 - 21:30, November 6th (Wednesday), 2013
- Are robotic weapons just like any other weapon ?
- Should robotic weapons be banned or encouraged ?
- What stance and actions should we take as robotics researchers ?
Military robots are no more restricted to science-fiction novels or to a
distant future but have become a concrete reality. Autonomous aerial
robots – or drones – are for instance currently deployed, mainly by the
US Army, in several countries such as Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen, or
Somalia. According to independent investigations, such robots have
caused several thousands of casualties, including a non-negligible
number of civilians. As a result, military applications of robotics are
focusing a large attention from the civil society, prompting field
researches on the consequences of drone strikes, as well as legal and
ethical debates about this new military technology. The case is
considered so serious that the UN has recently decided to set up
dedicated investigations into US drone strikes.
At the same time, within the academic robotics research community, there
are a considerable number of programs that are motivated by military
applications and/or funded by military agencies. Many of the advances
obtained in such programs have been or will be used in building
operational military robots. It is thus evident that robotics
researchers, who stand at the very beginning of the chain that
eventually leads to operational military robots, must take an important
part in the societal debate mentioned above.
The goal of this mini-symposium is to stimulate the debate on military
applications within the robotics community. To this end, we shall
briefly present facts and data about the current research and
deployments of military robots (technologies, casualties, economic and
psychological consequences, etc.), as well as elements of legal and
ethical reflections about military robots. The major part of the
symposium will then be dedicated to the open discussion among the
- Survey of recent reports on the use and consequences of military
robots (Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, Stanford and NYU law
schools, etc.) (by LR)
- Elements of legal and ethical reflections about military robots (by QCP)
- Quang-Cuong Pham, Assistant Professor, NTU, Singapore (cuong.pham [at]
- Ludovic Righetti, Group Leader, MPI, Germany (ludovic.righetti [at]
- Address : TOC Ariake, Room WG 201, 3-5-7 Ariake, Koto-ku, Tokyo
135-0063 (see map at http://www.normalesup.org/~pham/symposium/)
- Phone number : 080-4772-3207
Symposium Flyer: http://www.normalesup.org/~pham/symposium/flyer.pdf
Ludovic Righetti, Dr. Sc.
Autonomous Motion Department,
Max-Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems, Germany
CLMC Lab, University of Southern California, USA
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