Consortium members
AmI 2011 Workshop
Empowering and integrating senior citizens with virtual coaching

Workshop agenda

Background of the workshop

With Europe’s aging population and an increasing number of older peopleliving alone or geographically distant from kin, loneliness is turning into a prevalent issue. This might involve deleterious consequences for both the older person and society, such as depression and increased use of healthcare services. Virtual coaches that act as friend in a para-social relationship but also as mentor that helps the elderly end-user to create meaningful relationships in his actual social environment are a powerful method to overcome loneliness and increase the quality of life in the elderly population. The AAL Joint Programme projects A²E² and V2me are exploring virtual coaches and their application in AAL scenarios, including the use of user avatars, virtual self-representations that allow the user to be represented in communication scenarios. The user groups involved often are not acquainted with modern ICT systems and therefore it is a challenge to create intuitive, adaptive platforms that cater to the individual needs and allow the user to interact easily.

The Workshop

The workshop will be held in the scope of the AmI-2011 conference on Wednesday, November 16th, 2011 in Amsterdam, Netherlands.

The full-day workshop consists of two parts. In the first part, the different approaches to above topics are collected to create a set of current solutions, dealing with the socio-psychological and technical aspects of virtual coaches in AAL environments.

In the second part, a forum will provide workshop participants with the possibility to evaluate the solutions collected in the first part to find common aspects and determine further applications scenarios for virtual characters in AAL. The workshops aims at creating a shared set of knowledge gathering the current state of virtual coaching for elderly persons and collecting novel approaches for further applications in AAL context.

The workshop is aimed at experts in ambient assistant living services, socio-psychological methods, usability engineering and smart-environments. Psychologists, researchers and engineers working on the implementation of t

Call for Papers

The workshop will discuss the effects of virtual coaches on elderly users and how they can be used to improve the quality of life by aiding in planning daily life activities and mediating meaningful relationships to maintain and expand the social network of the elderly persons. Additional applications of virtual coaches and avatars in AAL specific context will be discussed. Furthermore it will explore intuitive interaction between the user and virtual entities, leading to the following collection of topics:

  • Realistic virtual characters in AAL applications

  • Adaptive virtual self-representation in AAL applications

  • Emotional expressiveness of virtual characters

  • Intuitive interaction devices for elderly end-users

  • User interface design for interaction with virtual entities

  • Virtual entities in smart, sensor-equipped environments

  • Mediating social contacts by means of virtual coaching

  • Technology use and aging: Inhibiting and facilitating factors

  • User experience and acceptance evaluation: Results of pilot studies and prototype testing from end-user perspective

Each participant is expected to submit a position paper of maximum 4 pages that should follow the Springer guidelines for proceedings. This paper should describe experiences and results in research on application scenarios for virtual coaches and virtual self-representations, intuitive interaction with virtual characters and integration of these technologies into smart environments.
The workshop proceedings will be published in the scope of Springer CCIS series. They will be available as full text electronic format at Springer's internet platform.

Important Dates

 Paper submission deadline: August 28th, 2011
 Paper acceptance notification: September 16th, 2011
 Camera ready paper deadline: October 7th,2011

Workshop Chairs

 Andreas Braun
 Fraunhofer IGD Darmstadt, Germany
 Dr. Peter H.M.P. Roelofsma
 VU University, CAMeRA, The Netherlands
 Prof. Dr. Dieter Ferring
 Université de Luxembourg, Luxembourg
 Milla Immonen
 VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland, Finland

Submission Information

We will be using the EasyChair conference management system for this workshop.
Please submit your papers here.

Updated 03/11/2011
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