Marynel Vázquez

Marynel Vazquez


Assistant Professor of Computer Science
Room / Office: Watson 410
Office Address:
51 Prospect Street
New Haven, CT 06511
Mailing Address:
P.O. Box 208285
New Haven, CT 06520
  • Ph.D., Carnegie Mellon University
  • M.S., Carnegie Mellon University
  • B.Eng., Universidad Simón Bolívar, Venezuela


Marynel Vázquez is a computer scientist and roboticist. Her research focuses on understanding how to build interactive computing technologies that are meaningful, intuitive, and appropriate for users, especially in complex social environments. In particular, her research agenda centers on enabling social interactions between robots and multiple people. She creates systems that support these interactions and studies the intricacies of these encounters to understand how we can make robots better social actors. Marynel's research crosses the boundaries between Human-Robot and Human-Computer Interaction, and often combines elements from robot perception, computer vision, machine learning, social science, and design.

Selected Awards & Honors:

  • 2014-2015 Generation Google Scholar
  • 2012 Finalist of the Google Anita Borg Memorial Scholarship
  • 2010 Apple Women in Engineering Scholar

Selected Publications:

  • Inducing Bystander Interventions During Robot Abuse with Social Mechanisms. X. Z. Tan, M. Vázquez, E. J. Carter, C. G. Morales, A. Steinfeld. Proc. of the 2018 ACM/IEEE International Conference on Human-Robot Interaction (HRI), 2018.
  • Towards Robot Autonomy in Group Conversations: Understanding the Effects of Body Orientation and Gaze. M. Vázquez, E. J. Carter, B. McDorman, J. Forlizzi, A. Steinfeld, S. E. Hudson. Proc. of the 2017 ACM/IEEE International Conference on Human-Robot Interaction (HRI), 2017.
  • Maintaining Awareness of the Focus of Attention of a Conversation: A Robot-Centric Reinforcement Learning Approach. M. Vázquez, A. Steinfeld, S. E. Hudson. Proc. of the 2016 IEEE International Symposium on Robot and Human Interactive Communication (RO-MAN), 2016. Finalist of the Best Paper Award (Technology category) and the RSJ/KROS Distinguished Interdisciplinary Research Award.
  • Parallel Detection of Conversational Groups of Free-Standing People and Tracking of their Lower-Body Orientation. M. Vázquez, A. Steinfeld, S. E. Hudson. Proc. of the 2015 IEEE International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS), 2015.
  • Spatial and Other Social Engagement Cues in a Child-Robot Interaction: Effects of a Sidekick. M. Vázquez, A. Steinfeld, S. E. Hudson, J. Forlizzi. Proc. of the 2014 ACM/IEEE International Conference on Human-Robot Interaction (HRI), 2014.
  • An Assisted Photography Framework to Help Visually Impaired Users Properly Aim a Camera. M. Vázquez, A. Steinfeld. ACM Transactions on Computer-Human Interaction, v. 21, n. 5, p. 25:1-25:29, 2014.