Photo of Johan Hoorn

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Personal profile

Personal information

Johan Hoorn is a researcher and developer of social robotics at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. He develops artificial intelligence, but also looks at the impact of robots on the user. This was recorded in a by now worldwide known documentary Alice cares, where three old women are visited by a friendly care robot, with major consequences for all concerned. For this documentary, he won with his group the Eureka Prize of the national science council (NWO/KNAW) for the best that happened that year in the Netherlands to make science accessible to the public at large. In Paris, the film won the international Prix Grand Écran for best scientific documentary.



Central themes of research are creativity and virtuality (recorded in three books) in communicative technologies such as virtual characters, emotionally intelligent systems, conversational and social robots. His work was awarded a Burgen Scholarship of the Academia Europaea for “excellent academic achievement,” and he received a Lorentz Fellowship of the Royal Dutch Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW) to write an integrative theory of creativity. 

Ancillary activities

  • ROBOpop Foundation | Amsterdam | Bestuurder | 2016-05-02 - present
  • Hong Kong Polytechnic University | Hong Kong | Full professor of Social Robotics | 2018-01-15 - present

Ancillary activities are updated daily


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