Influential Paper Award

Influential Paper Award

The IFAAMAS Influential Paper Award seeks to recognise publications that have made influential and long-lasting contributions to the field. Candidates for this award are papers that have proved a key result, led to the development of a new subfield, demonstrated a significant new application or system, or simply presented a new way of thinking about a topic that has proved influential.

This year’s award committee, chaired by Virginia Dignum (other members: Marina De Vos, Amal El Fallah Seghrouchni, Kate Larson, Javier Vazquez-Salceda, and Gerhard Weiss), selected two papers to be recognised with an IFAAMAS Influential Paper Award:

Rajeev Alur, Thomas A. Henzinger, and Orna Kupferman. Alternating-time Temporal Logic. Journal of the ACM, Vol. 49, No. 5, pp. 672-713, September 2002. Preliminary version published in the proceedings of the 38th Annual Symposium on the Foundations of Computer Science (FOCS-1997).

Citation: This paper introduced the first computational framework for formally reasoning about multiagent systems, a topic that has become central to AAMAS, with multiple papers each year. The original framework provided three critical ingredients: a temporal-logic syntax (ATL) that explicitly talks about agents, a semantics (alternating transition systems) that captures the capabilities of individual agents, and a practical algorithm that extended classical model checking (enumerative and symbolic). Since its introduction in 1997, ATL has become the standard specification formalism for multiagent systems, with more than 2,000 citations and numerous applications in Formal Methods (especially reactive synthesis), Discrete-Event Control, and Artificial Intelligence (especially planning). Many of the issues raised and debated there, including the difficulty of strategising under incomplete information, are still with us 20 years after its publication.

Cynthia Breazeal. Emotion and Sociable Humanoid Robots. International Journal of Human-Computer Studies, Vol. 59, Issues 1-2, pp. 119-155, July 2003.

Citation: This paper pioneered work at the intersection of autonomous agents, affect theory, and human-robot interaction that helped spawn the field of Social Robotics and Human-Robot Interaction. This article is one of the most highly cited papers in the field (over 1,300 citations). The paper provided a notable contrast to the design of then-contemporary embodied conversational agents that focused primarily on language and gesture, but generally avoided the important role of emotion and affect in bi-directional communication with people. This paper is seminal, having positioned as a new research direction the field of Autonomous Social Robotics, and setting forth computational models of emotion and motivation to support collaborative, goal-directed, mutually-regulated, and natural face-to-face interaction between humans and robots. 

The authors of both papers will be delivering keynote addresses at the conference. More information about the award and a list of previous winners are available from the IFAAMAS website.