UCL Psychology and Language Sciences


Speech Science Forum -- Pablo Arias Sarah

06 June 2024, 4:00 pm–5:00 pm

Profile picture for Pablo Arias

Manipulating social signals during interactions to uncover their causal effect on social behavior

Event Information

Open to





Rana Abu-Zhaya


Chandler House G15
Wakefield Street

Social interaction research is lacking an experimental paradigm enabling researchers to understand how specific social signals (e.g. emotional expressions or physical attributes) causally influence social behavior. To go beyond these limitations, we built the experimental platform DuckSoup. DuckSoup is a video-conference experimental platform that enables researchers to transform the voices and faces of participants with transformation filters in real time during interactions.  During this talk, I will show how we use DuckSoup to align (or misalign) the smiles of interacting participants with smile transformation algorithms, to investigate how smile alignment causally influences liking. I will conclude by presenting my vision for the future of social interaction research. Particularly, one where we are able to (1) scale social cognition experiments by collecting dozens of interacting participants in parallel and in different cultures, (2) reveal how specific social signals bias our social behavior and (3) reveal the multimodal mechanisms recruited by such biases.

This event will be hosted online as well: https://ucl.zoom.us/j/97718702895?pwd=UzhOcHlwMTd4NWZFWGVTNGZwTndCQT09

About the Speaker

Pablo Arias Sarah

Postdoctoral Fellow at University of Glasgow

Pablo Arias Sarah is a postdoctoral Marie Curie Fellow working at the University of Glasgow in the School of Psychology and Neuroscience. He studies human social cognition mechanisms using digital signal processing techniques. He is particularly interested in understanding how specific social signals can causally trigger the emergence of social behaviours and feedback loops during social interactions. He holds a a PhD in cognitive science from Sorbonne University, a Master of Engineering in digital technologies and multimedia from Polytech' Nantes, and a Master of Science in acoustics, signal processing and computer science applied to sound, from IRCAM. You can find more information here : WebsiteGoogle ScholarTwitter

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