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SONICOM Partners

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University of Glasgow


The University of Glasgow (UoG), founded in 1451, has a strong tradition in teaching and research. It was ranked 67th in the QS World University Rankings 2020 and has over 23,000 undergraduate and postgraduate students. UGLAS has an annual research income of over £177m with significant grants from the EU, charities and UK research funding councils.

The School of Computing Science has 46 academic staff, 36 research staff and 90 PhD students working in all aspects of computing. It was rated as top ten for research power in the last UK government Research Excellence Framework evaluation and achieved an ‘Excellent’ rating for its teaching.

The Glasgow Interactive Systems Group (GIST) within the School of Computing Science is one of the top international research groups in human-computer interaction with a very strong reputation. The main foci of the group are multimodal interaction, social signal processing, and visualisation. It has strong links with companies such as Nokia, Microsoft, Samsung, NASA, Google, Immersion, B&O, Freescale and IBM.

UoG researchers have great experience in social signal processing, AI and machine learning, applied psychological experiments, multimodal human computer interaction and evaluation in complex, real world environments.


UoG will lead WP2, coordinating the SONICOM efforts aimed at endowing VR/AR with social intelligence, i.e., with the ability to detect and interpret the behavioural traces of social and psychological phenomena in users that interact with a virtual agent. UoG will also significantly contribute to WP4, specifically to design and implement the evaluations revolving around blind users.

University of Glasgow will also be involved in WP3 and WP5, supporting the integration of the AI-based models in the SONICOM Framework and Ecosystem.

Team members

Alessandro Vinciarelli builds upon his experience as a coordinator of the FP7 funded European Network of Excellence on Social Signal Processing (2009-2014) and as a Director of the UKRI Centre for Doctoral Training in Socially Intelligent Artificial Agents, a project aimed at training 50 PhD students in the area of Artificial Social Intelligence.

Stephen Brewster builds upon his previous experience in the development of technologies for visually impaired individuals accumulated in previous projects, including Audio Bracelet for Blind Interactions. Furthermore, he will rely on his experience in audio interactions in VR/AR environments.

Website Links



SONICOM will be hosted in the new building illustrated in the video (the Advanced Research Centre).

Tour of the ARC