Skip to main content

Friendly but Faulty: A Pilot Study on the Perceived Trust of Older Adults in a Social Robot

Giorgi, Ioanna, Tirotto, Francesca, Hagen, Oksana, Aider, Farida, Gianni, Mario, Palomino, Marco, Masala, Giovanni Luca (2022) Friendly but Faulty: A Pilot Study on the Perceived Trust of Older Adults in a Social Robot. IEEE Access, . ISSN 2169-3536. (doi:10.1109/ACCESS.2022.3202942) (KAR id:96819)

PDF Publisher pdf
Language: English

Download (1MB) Preview
[thumbnail of Friendly_but_Faulty_A_Pilot_Study_on_the_Perceived_Trust_of_Older_Adults_in_a_Social_Robot.pdf]
This file may not be suitable for users of assistive technology.
Request an accessible format
PDF Author's Accepted Manuscript
Language: English

Restricted to Repository staff only
Contact us about this Publication
[thumbnail of ACCESS3202942.pdf]
Official URL:


The efforts to promote ageing-in-place of healthy older adults via cybernetic support are fundamental to avoid possible consequences associated with relocation to facilities, including the loss of social ties and autonomy, and feelings of loneliness. This requires an understanding of key factors that affect the involvement of robots in eldercare and the elderly willingness to embrace the robots’ domestic use. Trust is argued to be the main foundation of an effective adult-care provider, which might be more significant if such providers are robots. Establishing, and maintaining trust usually involves two main dimensions: 1) the robot’s reliability (i.e., performance) and 2) the robot’s intrinsic attributes, including its degree of anthropomorphism and benevolence. We conducted a pilot study using a mixed methods approach to explore the extent to which these dimensions and their interaction influenced elderly trust in a humanoid social robot. Using two independent variables, type of attitude (warm, cold) and type of conduct (error, no-error), we aimed to investigate if the older adult participants would trust a purposefully faulty robot when the robot exerted a warm behaviour enhanced with non-functional touch more than a robot that did not, and in what way the robot error affected trust. Lastly, we also investigated the relationship between trust and a proxy variable of actual use of robots (i.e., intention to use robots at home ). Given the volatile and context-dependent nature of trust, our close-to real-world scenario of elder-robot interaction involved the administration of health supplements, in which the severity of robot error might have a greater implication on the perceived trust.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1109/ACCESS.2022.3202942
Uncontrolled keywords: intention to use robots, anthropomorphism, eldercare, humanoid robot, human-robot interaction (HRI), perceived trust, robot attributes, robot care companion, robot performance, social robot
Subjects: H Social Sciences
T Technology
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Computing, Engineering and Mathematical Sciences > School of Computing
Funders: [135] University of Kent
University of Plymouth (
Depositing User: Giovanni Masala
Date Deposited: 08 Sep 2022 14:24 UTC
Last Modified: 09 Sep 2022 12:32 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
Masala, Giovanni Luca:
  • Depositors only (login required):


Downloads per month over past year