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Accepted Paper:

People Supporting Robots Supporting People: Overcoming the Failures of Machine Intelligence in the Delivery of Care in Japan  
Shawn Bender (Dickinson College)

Paper short abstract:

The paper, which is based on ethnographic research in Japan, suggests that aspirations for a future of machine-driven care are unwarranted given the human intervention required for care robots to function successfully in the present.

Paper long abstract:

This paper explores emerging ontologies of the robotic based on ethnographic research among care professionals in Japan. For years, leaders in government and business in Japan have suggested that advanced robotics technologies will help maintain standards of care for the elderly and disabled in the face of a decreasing pool of care workers. This paper finds, to the contrary, that even the most sophisticated robotics technologies rarely perform in actual care sites without sustained and significant human intervention. The paper suggests further that newer robotic care devices reflect recognition of these technological limits, in effect sacrificing operational autonomy and an abundance of features in favor of real-world functionality. The paper concludes with a consideration of how these devices unsettle both conventional understandings of the robotic and aspirations for an even more automated future of care.

Panel P09a
AI in Health and Care: Development, Governance, and Ethics in East Asia
  Session 1 Thursday 9 June, 2022, -