I am a researcher in robotics, with over 15 years’ experience covering control systems, multi-robot coordination, and psychological modelling. Currently my main research interests are in human-robot collaboration, exploring the interface between human psychology, and robotics.

I received my M.Eng. degree in Electronic Control and Robot Engineering at The University of Hull in 2003, and my Ph.D. in Intelligent Systems from the Open University in 2008. My early work considered the structure and complexity of emergent coordination in multi-robot teams. This led to my involvement in robot football, representing the UK between 2004-2006.

In 2009, after a period as a consultant, I moved to the Department of Computer Science at Aberystwyth University to work on the European Framework 7 project IM-CLeVeR. It was at Aberystwyth that I became involved in developmental robotics: investigating methods for creating robots that learn following the processes in infant development.

In 2014 I joined the University of Sheffield, where I hold a joint appointment as Senior Innovation Fellow between the Department of Computer Science and the Integrated Manufacturing Group (part of the Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre). My role is a combination of research, knowledge exchange, and facility management, with my research work focussing on trustworthy human-robot collaboration.

I am a member of the UK Robotics and Autonomous Systems network (UK-RAS) management board, a Senior Member of the IEEE, and represent Sheffield Robotics at EU Robotics. I am also a passionate science communicator with experience in television and radio, and have had the honour of being a speaker at TEDx Cardiff.

University of Sheffield staff profile

Dr James law with a robot