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Robots and machines have been invited to collaborate for artistic purposes in a new urban space for the 'Glowbot Garden' - a large scale installation of soft interactive robots being presented in the newly pedestrianised Strand Aldwych.

How are we understanding the roles and impacts robots can play in urban life? This expert panel discussion will explore some of the technologies, policies and approaches that are enhancing the quality of human-robot interactions in urban environments. How do these kinds of installations influence public engagement and cultural experiences? What do experiences like this tell us about the emotional and psychological impact of these interactions on human creativity and well-being?

Air Giants collaborated with King’s robotics researchers and students to explore how we might develop a new wave of robots that learn by interacting with humans, and to explore how motion, distance and space might facilitate effective communication between humans and robots. In urban spaces, robots may collaborate with humans in various workplace and social settings- how do we think about factors influencing acceptance, trust, and concerns related to human-robot interactions?


Dr Oya Celiktutan, Associate Professor, Senior Lecturer in Robotics, King’s College London

Dr Shama Rahman, Founder, NeuroCreate

Jess Coldrey, Technology artist and humanitarian engineer

Richard Sewell, Co-founder, Air Giants

Emma Powell, Co-founder, Air Giants

Chaired by Dr Sanjay Modgil, Reader in Artificial Intelligence, King’s College London

Dr Shama Rahman is a scientist, artist, creative technologist and futurist. She holds a PhD in the neuroscience and complex systems of Creative Cognition and Innovation and her work has encompassed the use of wearable technology to enhance storytelling. Her multi-disciplinary practice has led her to be the Artistic Director of the Art/Science creative production agency Jugular Productions, producing interdisciplinary shows, salons, installations, immersive experiences and games. Bringing together this extensive knowledge and work she founded NeuroCreate - using AI and Neuroscience in a symbiotic digital design to enhance human creativity, performance and wellbeing.

Dr Oya Celiktutan is a Senior Lecturer in Robotics at the Department of Engineering, King’s College London, UK, where she leads the Social AI and Robotics Laboratory. Her research, at the intersection of machine learning and human-robot interaction, explores two broad questions through an interdisciplinary lens: how to learn human behaviour from multimodal data, and how to transfer this knowledge to robots for learning, action, and interaction. Her work has been supported by EPSRC, The Royal Society, and the EU Horizon, as well as through industrial collaborations. Her team’s research has been recognized with several awards, including the Best Paper Award at IEEE Ro-Man 2022, NVIDIA CCS Best Student Paper Award Runner Up at IEEE FG 2021, First Place Award and Honourable Mention Award at ICCV UDIVA Challenge 2021.

Sanjay Modgil is a Reader in Artificial Intelligence at the Department of Informatics at King's College London, and a visiting Professor at the Department of Philosophy at the University of Milan. His research and teaching focus is in the areas of ethics and the philosophy of Artificial Intelligence (AI), formal logic, and models of dialogue to enable humans and AI systems to communicate and reason together. He has given numerous invited talks to academic and public audiences, and engages regularly with the media on topics related to the Ethics of AI, Regulation of AI, and the impact of AI on society.

Jess Coldrey, a distinguished artist and humanitarian engineer previously resident at KCL Engineering, is at the forefront of sustainability and inclusion through her innovative, creative work. Globally recognised, her artwork has been exhibited in prominent venues, including the Australian Museum of Photography, London's Tate Britain, and COP26 in Glasgow. Acknowledged as one of the Top 50 Women in Engineering (2022) and honoured as a Laureate of the Australian French Association for Innovation and Research (2021), her contributions underscore a deep commitment to fostering essential dialogues about the future leveraging technology.

Emma Powell - Creative Director Air Giants
Emma is a director and designer with more than 10 years' experience designing for theatre and film, with a focus on puppetry. Her work continues to tour internationally, and she is a guest lecturer at several universities. Emma is motivated by the power of world-building to transport people, communicate ideas and initiate conversations. With a background in both arts and engineering, Emma loves steering projects to bring together the best of what both worlds can offer and create momentous artworks.

Richard Sewell - Director of Pneumatics Air Giants
Richard is a roboticist and interaction designer, with an enduring interest in the emotional power of movement and in the relationships that people form with machines. His background includes a number of small but energetic technology companies and a lot of experiment with unusual structures and methods of actuation.


On arrival please register at King's Strand Reception, which can be found on the Strand WC2R 2LS opposite St Mary Le Strand Church. You will be directed to the River Room, where the event is taking place.

Nearest stations: National Rail and Thameslink Services from Blackfriars, a 17 minute walk, and National Rail Services from Charing Cross, a 15 minute walk.
London Underground service from Temple, a 5 minute walk, and Embankment, a 15 minute walk.

There is no parking on site, however there is a pay and display system in nearby streets. For further information and maps please go to

Book your place here. 

Explore our other events presented as part of Glowbot Garden

This event is part the Glowbot Garden presented at King's College London with Air Giants

Event details

River Room
Strand Building
Strand Campus, Strand, London, WC2R 2LS