Social Robot Co-Design Canvases: A Participatory Design Framework

Minja Axelsson, Raquel Oliveira, Mattia Racca, Ville Kyrki

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)
114 Downloads (Pure)


Design teams of social robots are often multidisciplinary, due to the broad knowledge from different scientific domains needed to develop such complex technology. However, tools to facilitate multidisciplinary collaboration are scarce. We introduce a framework for the participatory design of social robots and corresponding canvas tool for participatory design. The canvases can be applied in different parts of the design process to facilitate collaboration between experts of different fields, as well as to incorporate prospective users of the robot into the design process. We investigate the usability of the proposed canvases with two social robot design case studies: a robot that played games online with teenage users and a librarian robot that guided users at a public library. We observe through participants' feedback that the canvases have the advantages of (1) providing structure, clarity, and a clear process to the design; (2) encouraging designers and users to share their viewpoints to progress toward a shared one; and (3) providing an educational and enjoyable design experience for the teams.

Original languageEnglish
Article number3
Number of pages39
JournalACM Transactions on Human-Robot Interaction
Issue number1
Early online dateOct 2021
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2022
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • design tool
  • Human-robot interaction
  • participatory design
  • robot design
  • social robots


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