Stefanos Nikolaidis

I am an assistant professor in computer science at the University of Southern California. I graduated with a PhD from the CMU Robotics Institute and with a MS from MIT. My research lies at the intersection of human-robot interaction, game-theory and robot planning under uncertainty. I draw upon insights from studies in economics, cognitive behavioral psychology and human team coordination, to develop mathematical models of human behavior and integrate them into robot decision making in a principled way. Ultimately, my research is motivated by real world problems, thus I believe strongly in the importance of models that are scalable and robust, supporting deployed systems in real world applications.

Hejia Zhang

Hejia is a computer science PhD student at the Interactive and Collaborative Autonomous Robotic Systems Lab advised by Prof. Stefanos Nikolaidis at University of Southern California. His research interests lie in ways robots can actively acquire knowledge from non-expert human users, vast amount of available online content and interacting with the environment to intelligently plan and act in real-world applications while alongside and interacting with humans. His research is motivated by real-world problems in domestic and field robotics and targets at eventually enabling robots to help ordinary people in their daily life and replace human workers in dangerous environments.

Heramb Nemlekar

Heramb is a PhD student advised by Prof. Stefanos Nikolaidis in the Computer Science department at the University of Southern California. He did his master’s in Robotics Engineering at the Worcester Polytechnic Institute where he was advised by Prof. Jane Li. His research interests lie in planning for human-robot collaboration, learning from demonstration and high-level symbolic planning. He is a recipient of the Annenberg Fellowship award.

Matt Fontaine

Matt Fontaine is a PhD student at the University of Southern California advised by Stefanos Nikolaidis. Prior to coming to USC, Matt completed B.S. and M.S. degree at the University of Central Florida. He also worked as a research assistant in game-based training at UCF’s Institute for Simulation and Training and as a simulation engineer at His research interests are broadly in the intersection of automatic scenario generation for training, procedural content generation in games, and human-robot interaction.

Nathaniel Dennler

Nathan is a 1st year Ph.D. student in the computer science department at USC. He is co-advised by Prof. Maja Matarić and Prof. Stefanos Nikolaidis. He previously received a B.S. in Computer Science and a B.Eng. in Robotics Engineering from Worcester Polytechnic Institute, where he explored ways to improve internalizing motivation in middle school students using intelligent tutoring systems. His current research interest is in developing computational models of social behavior to better inform physically assistive robots.

Jignesh Modi

Jignesh Modi is a Computer Science Master's student at the University of Southern California. He completed his Bachelor's in Electronics and Communication engineering from NIT Bhopal. He carries a couple of years of experience in the software industry. His research interests are machine learning, reinforcement learning, multi arm bandits, resource distribution in robotics. Apart from this he also an enthusiast developer.

Sean Yoon

Sean Yoon earned his B.S degree in Inha University at Incheon, S. Korea and is pursuing in Masters degree in Computer Science intelligent robotics track. He is currently working in research toward an integrated model to grasp an object and classify the category of external forces applied on the object advised by Prof. Stefanos Nikolaidis at the Interactive and Collaborative Autonomous Robotics Systems (ICAROS) Lab, USC. His main field of interest covers Deep Reinforcement Learning with IRL and applying it on a group or groups of robots to grasp how and what they learn in adversarial settings.

Zijian Hu

Zijian Hu is an undergraduate computer science student at the University of Southern California. He is interested in building robots that frees human from tedious tasks.

Alex Cuellar

Hi, I’m an undergraduate student at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology studying Electrical Engineering and Computer Science with a focus on robotics. At ICAROS, I helped develop, analyze, and test a new reinforcement leaning algorithm with constraints focusing on maintaining a sense of fairness. The algorithm can help robots and other computer systems develop trust with human users while maintaining effective decision making.

Eura Shin

Eura Shin is an undergraduate student at the University of Kentcky. She participated in the 2019 Research Experiences for Undergraduates program in the ICAROS lab on a robot assisted hair brushing project. She is interested creating adaptive algorithms for physically assistive robotics to help people with mobility impairments.