Kim Baraka



Kim Baraka is currently a postdoctoral fellow at the Socially Intelligent Machines Lab at the University of Texas at Austin. He holds a dual Ph.D. in Robotics from Carnegie Mellon University and Instituto Superior Técnico (Portugal), an M.S. in Robotics from Carnegie Mellon, and a Bachelor in Electrical and Computer Engineering from the American University of Beirut. His research interests lie at the intersection of Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning and Human-Robot Interaction. He is broadly interested in developing computational methods for transferring information and knowledge between humans and robots, to help one day achieve a mutual and beneficial human-robot relationship. In parallel from his scientific work, he is a professionally trained contemporary dancer, performing, teaching, and creating artistic work. Kim will be joining the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam as an assistant professor starting April 2021.

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In this talk, I will present a broad overview of my past, current and planned future research, identifying a common thread in the research themes I have worked on during my graduate and postdoctoral work. In the first part of the talk, focusing on robots teaching humans, I will discuss algorithmic solutions that enable socially assistive robots to teach both children and therapists in a personalized way. In the second part of the talk, focusing on humans teaching robots, I will discuss some preliminary efforts towards developing ways in which robots can learn tasks from human teachers in richer and more natural ways.

Papers covered during the talk

The talk will be a broad overview of my past, current and future research. A full list of publications can be found at