Futurist Forum


Wednesday, September 30, 2015, 11:30 - 16:00, Hall 2


Dominik Bösl - Corporate Innovation Office, KUKA AG & TUM School of Education, TU München

You can download a flyer and a poster of the Futurist Forum.


Shaping a united vision for the future of robotics


Robotics will change the world! It will unleash the same if not an even more disruptive and transformational power within the next 50 years as mainstream IT-technology and the Internet have in the last half of a decade.


This change will not be limited to the steadily growing field of industrial robotics. Due to a number of technological enablers, e.g. the broad availability of low cost but high performance sensor technologies, robotics will be unchained and liberated from its cells. It will conquer completely new domains until it pervades all areas of life, permeating all parts of the human experience realm.


The first seal has already been broken: by establishing and fostering sensitive and safe robotics, the foundations for cooperative robotic systems and human-machine-interaction have been laid. In the past, robots were surrounded by heavy safety cages, locking humans out and machines in; for the first time, these borders have now been obliterated. As if they were colleagues, workers can directly interact with automation systems.


But what will this future look like? How will our world, the global economy and societies change? Which impact will these changes have and what needs will arise in the near future? And how can robotics and automation technologies help address some of these issues?


The Futurist Forum brings together interdisciplinary experts from different domains, such as Epistemology, Industry, Government, Robotics Research, Consulting and other fields in order to discuss a common vision of the future.


The goal of the Futurist Forum is to provide a first draft of a “polar star” for the robotics community: A universally shared vision of the future that will be refined and detailed over the next few years. It will provide a holistic view on the future and its arising challenges, serving future robotic research as motivation and guidance.


Nurtured by technological breakthroughs in industrial automation, robotics will be enabled to permeate other domains. Hence, a new generation of Robotic Natives will grow up in a society that is enriched and enhanced by robotics in every imaginable way. Robotics will be tailored into many everyday objects, thus becoming an integral part of all kinds of appliances.


The direct interaction with any form of robotic and automated system will not intimidate this Generation Robotics. It will perceive self-driving cars, autonomous service robots, automatized logistics and robotics in retail as just as normal as the internet, smartphones and tablets are today.


The collaborative vision of the future is crucial for paving the way for this new Generation ‘R’: the need to discuss and establish a set of guidelines and frameworks to address questions about the ethical, juridical, social and political impact of robotics on our daily life will arise. The Futurist Forum can lay the foundations for an elaborate debate on Robotic Governance in which stakeholders from diverse domains have to be involved – from robotics and other interdisciplinary fields; from science and research, industry, politics and society.


11:30 - Keynote & Discussion
  (Gerd Hirzinger & Oussama Khatib)

12:30 - IT-Security meets Safety -
               The future of Security
                   (Christoph Peylo)

13:00 - Lunch Break

13:45 - The Future of Work -
            Reinventing Productivity
                    (Harald Becker)

14:15 - The Future Personal Robots:
                      Digital Natives
                      (Tim Yuan)

14:30 - Future of Government (Juha Heikkilä)

15:15 - Panel Discussion - Q&A