October 2020 IROS Workshop on Cognitive Robotic Surgery

This workshop focus on the cognitive aspects of robotic surgery: what are the aspects of an artificially intelligent robotic system for surgery?

Given the large breadth in surgical robotics today, a focus on cognitive aspects of the robotic systems and the artificial intelligence underlying their behaviors is increasingly important to focus on; a parallel to the discussion of self-driving cars, another area where human life is in the hands of the AI. To explore this, the following key areas will be the primary focus of the workshop:

  • Perception: ​the use of sensory feedback from optical, force, etc. modalities to perform localization of the robot and the tissues of interest, context of the situation, and etc. Segmentation, tracking, reconstruction, fusion, robot estimation, etc.

  • Inference:​ strategies for contextual understanding of the environment and the robot. This falls between perception and planning and may generalize beyond the systems themselves to understanding more about the clinical process, surgeons, etc.

  • Planning and Automation:​ use of perception and inferencing to generate and follow plans to perform an intervention or diagnostic procedure. Consideration of human-in-the-loop, co-robot and human-robot interactions, motion and task planning.

  • Clinical, Practical, Social, and Ethical Implications:​ clinical perspectives of robotics and automation in surgery; practical issues of data availability and validation; considerations of impact and need, commercial value and market size; ethical implications of increased automation and robotic tools in the operating room.


Paolo Fiorini

Professor of Computer Science, University of Verona


Alícia Casals Gelpí

Professor of the Automatic Control Department at Technical University of Catalonia.
Head of the Robotics and Vision Division of the Biomedical Engineering Research Centre (CREB).
Associate researcher of the Institute of Bioengineering of Catalonia.



Michael C. Yip, Florian Richter*, Danail Stoyanov, Francisco Vasconcelos, Fanny Ficuciello, Emmanuel B Vander Poorten, Peter Kazanzides, Blake Hannaford, Gregory Scott Fischer

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