‘Social loafing’ found when working alongside robots

  • October 18, 2023
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Study finds people tend to pay less attention when working with robots, just like with respected human colleagues

People tend to pay less attention to tasks when working alongside a robot, according to research that found evidence of “social loafing” – where team members work less hard if they think others will cover for them.

Researchers at the Technical University of Berlin said people come to see robots as part of their team. Where they think a colleague – or the technology – performs particularly well, or where they think their own contribution would not be appreciated, people tend to take a more laid-back approach, the scientists suggested.

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