Of Men, Machines and Their Interactive Behavior. When AI and Robotics Meet Behavioral Economics

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


This chapter surveys the main contributions in the behavioral economics literature dealing with the study of interactions between human and ‘artificial’ agents. While human-computer interactions have been extensively studied in the last decade, Artificial Intelligence and humanoid robots have entered the focus of attention of behavioral economics only very recently. Early studies used artificial agents as a ‘trick’ to observe a subject’s reaction ‘free’ from other confounding factors (such as gender, ethnicity, age etc.) intrinsically embedded in confederate human partners. More recent works study the occurrence of similar or dissimilar behaviors based on the partners’ nature. The experimental evidence surveyed in this chapter shows that interactions with artificial agents trigger less of an emotional response in the subjects, while subjects tend to extend to humanoid robots similar attributes that they attach to human beings, provided that robots are able to display emotions, empathy and effective and context-related communication. The description of the main results of an original experiment, devised by the authors, concludes the paper.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHumane Robotics. A multidisciplinary approach towards the development of humane-centered technologies
Number of pages20
Publication statusPublished - 2022


  • artificial agents
  • behavioral economics
  • behavioral experiments
  • humanoid robots


Dive into the research topics of 'Of Men, Machines and Their Interactive Behavior. When AI and Robotics Meet Behavioral Economics'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this