With a background in Sociology, Social Psychology, and Human-Computer Interaction, I study how humans interact with new technology. For my research on Human-Robot Interaction (HRI) I have been awarded a Hertha Firnberg and an Elise Richter grant from the FWF Science Fund, a postdoc programme aimed at promoting the university career of young female research scientists. Since 2013 I am a senior research at the TU Wien. Currently, I am a member of the Human Computer Interaction Group led by Prof. Gerladine Fizpatrick (Institute of Visual Computing and Human-Centered Technology). In 2013 I also had the honour of being selected as one of the “25 women you need to know in robotics” (http://robohub.org/25-women-in-robotics-you-need-to-know-about/) by the robohub contributor group. In 2017 I was a selected speaker for Tedx TUWien (https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=astrid+weiss).
Prior to my work at the Human Computer Interaction Group, I was working in the Vision4Robotics group (ACIN – Automation and Control Institute) under the mentoring of Prof. Markus Vincze. Until 2012, I was a senior researcher and interdisciplinary team leader for a research group on “Adaptive Systems” at the ICT&S Center, University of Salzburg (led by Prof. Manfred Tscheligi). From September 2011 until January 2012 I was on a short-term sabbatical to work with Prof. Vanessa Evers at the University of Twente, NL. In 2010, I completed my PhD in Human-Computer Interaction at University of Salzburg and I hold a Master degree in Sociology from University of Salzburg from 2005.
My work is very much inspired by Lucy Suchman’s “Plans and Situated Action” and Reeves’ and Nass’ “Media Equation”. I study how people interact with new technologies, what makes them accept or reject it, and how their experiences influence the way how they interact in the world. I specifically base my research on theories on human behaviour and empirical studies of human-human interaction. My aim is to transfer this knowledge into novel interaction paradigms and interface designs. In other words, my research focusses on the question: How can we make technology less demanding, make it fade into the background of everyday experiences, and create it to assist us. As a social scientists working together with engineers, computer scientists, interaction designers etc. my goal is to develop technology that is sustainably used by real people.