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Assisi|bf Project

New European-level research project develops robots that will learn the language of animals


The main goal of ASSISI is to establish a robotic society that is able to develop communication channels to animal societies (honeybees & fish swarms) on its own. These robots will adapt by evolutionary algorithms until they have learned to interact with animals in a desired way.

This new technology is aimed to lay new foundations on the way in which humans can interfere with animal societies in order to manage the environment. The researchers expect their work to have impact on agriculture, live stock management and environmental protection. In parallel, the mixed societies of animals and robots will represent a novel kind of bio-hybrid ICT system, as the animals will enrich the capabilities of the machines and vice versa. The research is conducted by six European institutions from Austria, Croatia, France, Germany, Portugal and Switzerland.



1. Develop robots that can influence the collective behaviours of animals (bees and fish).
2. Establishing an adaptive and self-organising society build by robots and animals.
3. Enable the robots to autonomously „learn“ the social language of the animals.
4. Establish mixed societies that pursue a common goal which can be defined by human ,users‘ of the system.
5. Allow the robots to gain novel skills by incorporating the capabilities of the animals (sensors, cognition).

EU-FP7 Project no. 601074. Objective ICT-2011.9.10: Fundamentals of Collective Adaptive Systems - FOC


Project partners:

  • Univ. Graz (AT): Coordination & bee experiments
  • Univ. Zagreb (HR): Honeybee robots
  • Univ. Paris-Diderot (FR): Fish experiments
  • EPFL (CH): Fish robots
  • Univ. Lisboa (P): Modelling & simulation
  • Cybertronica Research (D): Swarm robots & modelling

Duration: 5 years; Start: 1st of February 2013

The project is funded by European Commission under the programme Future and Emerging Technologies, EU-FP7 Project no. 601074. Objective ICT-2011.9.10: Fundamentals of Collective Adaptive Systems – FOCAS