J.H. Vroon MSc (Jered)

About Me

Despite all our individual differences, there exist numerous regularities in human behaviour. Even in situations as complex as for example social interaction, we can still observe common patterns in how people position themselves and react to each other.

I am fascinated by these patterns and enjoy using the tools of science to try and figure them out – preferably to the point where we can reproduce them, for example in a robot. Two strongly related questions are particularly relevant and interesting to me in this respect;

  • What are relevant cues for (social) behaviour and how can we (automatically) detect these cues?
  • What responses are appropriate in which situation and why?


My background is in Cognitive Artificial Intelligence, which I studied at the Radboud University Nijmegen. For my bachelor’s thesis I investigated a computer model of human/animal reinforcement learning in situations with non-deterministic rewards. During my master I investigated different paradigms (or architectures) that could be used to create (robotic) behaviour. In my master thesis, I introduced a formal computational method for comparing such algorithms and used that to proof their relative efficiency in different kinds of situations.

Currently, I am a PhD student at the University of Twente, working on the Teresa project (2014-2017). Within this project, we are looking at situations where elderly are represented by a robot in a social interaction with their peers. The robot is then to semi-autonomously display social behaviours that will help it integrate in the interaction.

My focus is on the detection and understanding of the behaviour of groups interacting with the robot. On the one end of the spectrum, this involves using techniques from computer vision / social signal processing to investigate and detect relevant social cues. On the other end, this is about finding out what kinds of behaviours people would prefer the robot to show in response to those cues.


European Union
New Technology


van Houwelingen-Snippe, J., Vroon, J. H., Englebienne, G., & Haselager, W. F. G. (2017). Blame my telepresence robot Joint effect of proxemics and attribution on interpersonal attraction. In 2017 26th IEEE International Symposium on Robot and Human Interactive Communication (RO-MAN) (pp. 162-168). IEEE. DOI: 10.1109/ROMAN.2017.8172296
Vroon, J. H. (2017). Responsive Social Positioning Behaviors for Semi-Autonomous Telepresence Robots. In HRI '17 Proceedings of the Companion of the 2017 ACM/IEEE International Conference on Human-Robot Interaction (pp. 383-384). DOI: 10.1145/3029798.3034821
Bruijnes, M., van Delden, R., & Vroon, J. H. (2017). Telepresence Robots in the Wide Wild World. Paper presented at 3rd Workshop on Ethical Encounters in HCI, Denver, United States.
Vroon, J., Zaga, C., Davison, D., Kolkmeier, J., & Linssen, J. (2017). Snoozle - A Robotic Pillow That Helps You Go to Sleep: HRI 2017 Student Design Competition. In HRI '17: Proceedings of the Companion of the 2017 ACM/IEEE International Conference on Human-Robot Interaction (pp. 399-400). New York, NY: Association for Computing Machinery. DOI: 10.1145/3029798.3034949
Vroon, J. H., Englebienne, G., & Evers, V. (2016). Responsive Social Agents: Feedback-Sensitive Behavior Generation for Social Interactions. In A. Agah, J-J. Cabibihan, A. M. Howard, M. A. Salichs, & H. He (Eds.), Social Robotics: 8th International Conference, ICSR 2016, Kansas City, MO, USA, November 1-3, 2016 Proceedings (pp. 126-137). (Lecture notes in computer science; Vol. 9979). DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-47437-3_13
Kolkmeier, J., Vroon, J. H., & Heylen, D. K. J. (2016). Interacting with Virtual Agents in Shared Space: Single and Joint Effects of Gaze and Proxemics. In D. Traum, W. Swartout, P. Khooshabeh, S. Kopp, S. Scherer, & A. Leuski (Eds.), Proceedings of the International Conference on Intelligent Virtual Agents, IVA 2016 (pp. 1-14). (Lecture Notes in Computer Science; Vol. 10011). New York: Springer Verlag. DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-47665-0_1
Vroon, J. H., Joosse, M. P., Lohse, M., Kolkmeier, J., Kim, J., Truong, K. P., ... Evers, V. (2015). Dynamics of social positioning patterns in group-robot interactions. In Proceedings of the 24th IEEE International Sumposium on Robot and Human Interactive Communication (RoMan 2015) (pp. 394-399). USA: IEEE ROBOTICS AND AUTOMATION SOCIETY. DOI: 10.1109/ROMAN.2015.7333633
Vroon, J. H., Kim, J., & Koster, R. (2015). Robot response behaviors to accommodate hearing problems. In Proceedings of New Friends 2015: the 1st International Conference on Social Robotics in Therapy and Education Almere, The Netherlands: Windesheim Flevoland University.
Shiarlis, K., Messias, J., van Someren, M., Whiteson, S., Kim, J., Vroon, J. H., ... Michel, H. (2015). TERESA: a socially intelligent semi-autonomous telepresence system. -. Paper presented at Workshop on Machine Learning for Social Robotics 2015, Seattle, United States.

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University of Twente
Drienerlolaan 5
7522 NB Enschede
The Netherlands

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Mailing Address

University of Twente
P.O. Box 217
7500 AE Enschede
The Netherlands