Jen Haensel


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Personal profile

Research interests

As part of Joanna Bryson's research group, I currently investigate the impact of anthropomorphic robot designs on our understanding of intelligent systems. For instance, do we attribute greater agency and mentality to robots with more humanlike appearance? How does this in turn affect our behaviour within human-robot interactions, and can highly anthropomorphic designs potentially become deceptive? How can we make machine nature more transparent to ensure responsible use of AI?

Before robots, I used mobile eye tracking within social interaction paradigms to examine the influence of a range of factors (e.g., cultural environment, visual saliency, age) that shape face perception, and I also investigated how this changes across human development. 

So, in its broadest sense, I am interested in employing different experimental paradigms to study the factors that shape and motivate human social interactions and perceptions.

Education/Academic qualification

Psychology/Vision Science, Doctor of Philosophy, Birkbeck, University of London


Educational Neuroscience, Master of Science, University College London & Birkbeck


Computational Neuroscience, Master of Science, University of Sheffield


Mathematics & Psychology, Bachelor of Science, University of Glasgow


External positions

Associate Research Fellow, Birkbeck, University of London

2019 → …


  • Artificial Intelligence
  • AI ethics
  • Human-Robot Interaction
  • Face perception
  • Eye Tracking
  • Eye Movements
  • Social Neuroscience
  • Neuroscience
  • Developmental Psychology
  • Vision Science

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