To view submitted ethical challenge proposals for ICRA 2023, click the button below:

***HACKATHON Announcement***

The Roboethics Competition Hackathon is underway! As planned, we’ve had a chance to look at the Ethics Challenge submissions and we’ve decided to use two of them as the focus of this year’s Hackathon. We picked these two submissions because we believe each:

(a) provides a thorough ethics analysis that is focused on the scenario we defined in the Roboethics Competition description (i.e. focuses the personas, items, and long term care home context);

(b) provides a set of engineering requirements that are focused on the ethical analysis contained in the report;

(c) provides enough detail to allow teams flexibility in their implementation approach; and

(d) is challenging and exciting!


Your task is to pick ONE of the two reports and implement it as completely as possible given the time constraints.

Hackathon Challenge

The goal of the coding competition is to explore public perspectives on ethical challenges associated with designing a home service robot and foster innovative solutions that address these challenges. We invite participants of all coding skills level to develop a virtual robot that can fetch objects in a care home context while navigating complex ethical scenarios. Rather than a solution that only serves and is tailored to the needs of a single user, we encourage our participants to imagine being a programmer designing a product that will enter many different care homes, households in the near future and meeting the needs of a diverse set of stakeholders. 

Participants need to implement one of the selected reports from the Ethics Challenge using Processing 4.

More details on Processing can be found here:

The Scenario

Imagine you run an engineering consultancy tasked with creating a working prototype (e.g., a 2D simulation) of a personal robot that is able to bring various objects upon request in a home environment.  Your task is to implement one of the submitted Ethics Challenge reports to address this challenge. We are supplying a Processing-based framework to run the ethical simulations. You are tasked with extending the framework to produce a prototype that operates within an elderly care facility that we have already defined within Processing. It is a single-floor elderly care home that includes the following rooms:


A map of the elderly care home that you will be using to implement your code. 

The facility have these specific rooms, but the characters and items may or may not be concise within this list. You are free to add new characters or items as you wish. In the starter code you will find the following characters and items:



Interactable Objects

Sample Personas for the people in the elderly care Home

*Your team can add new personas.




Robot Configuration

The robot has an arm with a suitable gripper and a wheeled mobile base with sensors that enables it to navigate throughout the space without issue (e.g., Tiago, Fetch, etc.)

Controlling the Robot

Every request is explicit and provided in the following form: 

Person A requests Object x to be brought to [Person B or Location], where: 

An illustration of the robot's command structure. A person asks the robot to fetch an item to somewhere or someone. That someone could be the requester, or a completely different person.

Further details:

As a bonus, you may also consider:

Hackathon Evaluation Criteria

Generalizeability (30%): How easy is it for a non-technical user of the demo to try different retrieval requests that have not been previously considered in the Ethics Challenge report or during the competition? How easy is it to add new objects, stakeholders, and other contextual elements into the system to try how the proposed robot design will handle novel retrieval requests? 

Correspondence (30%): How well does the submission reflect the intentions expressed in the chosen Ethics Challenge report? If there are inaccuracies/limitations in the implementation, how well has it been documented?

Ingenuity (30%): How much creativity, simplicity, innovativeness, and thoughtfulness have been demonstrated in implementing proposed designs into the code? If enhancements have been made relative to the proposed design what were they and how well have they been documented?

Demo Quality (10%): How effectively does the demo communicate the proposed solution to the observers?

Hackathon Code Framework

You can download the started code from the link above. 

The instruction of how to use the code is given below in the video tutorial. This tutorial shows a much simpler scenario than this year's competition. However, the procedure to use and modify the code is completely same. 

Hackathon Code Submission

Submission Instruction:

Sign up to participate

Interested in participating, or learning more about the competition? Sign up here to get the latest information about the competition, and to let us know how you'd like to participate. We will communicate any updates and new information about the competition via the mailing list linked to the sign-up forms as well as the website.