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Cynthia Breazeal            

Dean For Digital Learning, MIT; Expert on Responsible AI & Social Robotics

Cynthia Breazeal is a professor of media arts and sciences at MIT, where she founded and directs the Personal Robots group at the Media Lab. She is the MIT dean for digital learning, and in this role, she leverages her experience in emerging digital technologies and business, research, and strategic initiatives to lead Open Learning’s business and research & engagement units. She is also the Director of the MIT-wide Initiative on Responsible AI for Social Empowerment and Education. MIT RAISE is a research and outreach effort that advances access and inclusivity in AI education to people of all ages and backgrounds with a focus on K12 and the workforce. She co-founded the consumer social robotics company, Jibo, Inc., where she served as Chief Scientist and Chief Experience Officer.

A pioneer in the robotics industry, Breazeal's primary work has focused on social robots at the intersection of artificial intelligence, machine learning and human psychology. Her work balances technical innovation in AI, UX design, and understanding the psychology of engagement to design personified AI technologies that promote human flourishing and personal growth. Her recent work focuses on the theme of "living with AI" and understanding the long-term impact of social robots that can build relationships and provide personalized support as helpful companions in daily life. Her research group actively investigates social robots applied to education, pediatrics, health and wellness, and aging.

Her seminal book, "Designing Sociable Robots," is recognized as a landmark in launching the field of Social Robotics and Human-Robot Interaction. She is an international award-winning innovator, designer, and entrepreneur. She has spoken at prominent venues such as TED, the World Economic Forum, the UN, SXSW, CES, and she has keynoted at numerous top academic conferences. She is a recipient of the National Academy of Engineering's Gilbreth Lecture Award, Technology Review's TR35 Award, and TIME magazine's Best Inventions where her Jibo robot was featured on the cover. She has received numerous design awards including recognition by the National Design Awards, Fast Company Design Award and Core 77. She has also been recognized as a rising entrepreneur by Fortune and Entrepreneur Magazine, and appeared on the Forbes "50 Over 50" list.

Breazeal did her graduate work at the MIT Artificial Intelligence Lab, receiving her doctorate in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from MIT.


Jibo’s Cynthia Breazeal: Why We Will Learn To Love Our Robots
ReadWriteBuilders is a series of interviews with developers, designers and other architects of the programmable future. Cynthia Breazeal has been called the mother of personal robotics, and it’s easy to see why. For more than ten years, she has brought forth robotic life that is designed to express, gesture, and relate to humans.
Friendly Robot Is a Hands-Free Home Helper
Cynthia Breazeal, the famed roboticist at MIT’s Media Lab and a pioneer of social robotics, is unveiling her latest creation today. Unlike her previous robots, created for research and used in settings like classrooms and hospitals, her newest robotic device is designed for people to use at home.
When NASA’s Sojourner rover landed on Mars in 1997, Cynthia Breazeal remembers thinking, “We can send robots to space, but we still don’t have ones that can ‘live’ beside us.” What’s up with that? She set out to find the answer, and in the process, pioneered the field of social robotics.
Cynthia Breazeal’s Robotic Quest
The Next member of Cynthia Breazeal’s household might be a robot. Later this year, she is releasing her latest creation, Jibo, a “social robot” that she sees as both an assistant and a companion.

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