Virtual Reality for Artificial Intelligence: Human-centered simulation for social science

Pietro Cipresso, Giuseppe Riva

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


There is a long last tradition in Artificial Intelligence as use of Robots endowing human peculiarities, from a cognitive and emotional point of view, and not only in shape. Today Artificial Intelligence is more oriented to several form of collective intelligence, also building robot simulators (hardware or software) to deeply understand collective behaviors in human beings and society as a whole. Modeling has also been crucial in the social sciences, to understand how complex systems can arise from simple rules. However, while engineers' simulations can be performed in the physical world using robots, for social scientist this is impossible. For decades, researchers tried to improve simulations by endowing artificial agents with simple and complex rules that emulated human behavior also by using artificial intelligence (AI). To include human beings and their real intelligence within artificial societies is now the big challenge. We present an hybrid (human-artificial) platform where experiments can be performed by simulated artificial worlds in the following manner: 1) agents' behaviors are regulated by the behaviors shown in Virtual Reality involving real human beings exposed to specific situations to simulate, and 2) technology transfers these rules into the artificial world. These form a closed-loop of real behaviors inserted into artificial agents, which can be used to study real society.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAnnual Review of Cybertherapy and Telemedicine 2015: Virtual Reality in Healthcare: Medical Simulation and Experiential Interface
PublisherIOS Press
Number of pages5
ISBN (Electronic)9781614995944
Publication statusPublished - 2015

Publication series

NameStudies in Health Technology and Informatics
ISSN (Print)09269630
ISSN (Electronic)18798365


  • ALife
  • Artificial Societies
  • Computational Intelligence
  • Computational Models
  • Computational Psychometrics
  • Social Simulation
  • Virtual Reality

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Health Informatics
  • Health Information Management


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