Impact program

Meet TrusTee: Tilburg University develops the world's most reliable robot

For the first time in human history we will live and work together with 'artifacts' - robots, artificial intelligence in many forms, such as (chat) bots and drones - that are not human or animal, but increasingly autonomous, intelligent and self-learning.

This development raises fundamental questions: how do we ensure that we align this technology with human values as well as possible? Are we, as humanity, actually aware of what we think is important - and do we agree? How do we ensure that the digital world becomes even better than the analog world: for the individual, society and our planet? Or will this technology prove to be a "devil in device"?

Humanities and social sciences are indispensable for developing and building the most reliable and social technology. These sciences already have in-depth knowledge of how people and society function and can also use this knowledge in the robot society. These disciplines also know pre-eminently what values are and how values are or are not implemented and implemented in practice.


At Tilburg University we also wish to contribute to the development of trustworthy robots and artificial intelligence, based on our expertise and social commitment. At the “Man-Machine & Values” seminar, November 2019  we gave this trusted technology a face. Meet TrusTee! Professor Koen Becking, former president of Tilburg University, welcomed scientists and our societal partners. 

Read the welcome speech

Animation TrusTee

Essay: Building TrusTee: The World's Most Trusted Robot

In the essay ‘Building TrusTee: The World’s Most Trusted Robot’, prof.dr. Ton Wilthagen and Program Manager Marieke Schoots argue that social sciences and humanities are indispensable for the development and construction of the most reliable and social technology and they further discuss the future-oriented research and impact agenda.

Download the essay

Interview Prof.dr. Ton Wilthagen