CITRIS People and Robots News

Also see the BAIR blog for articles on the latest Artificial Intelligence research.


CPAR researchers lead new engineering research center to focus on agricultural technology

Aug 3, 2020

Enabling humanoid robot movement with imitation learning and mimicking of animal behaviors

July 19, 2020

Enabling humanoid robot movement with imitation learning and mimicking of animal behaviors

Coronavirus accelerates the rise of the robot harvester

June 30, 2020 

CITRIS bridge program involves incoming students in the future of agriculture

June 22, 2020 

COVID provides a new challenge for engineering students’ capstone projects

Jun 20, 2020 

Black roboticists on racism, bias and building better AI

Jun 19, 2020 

In automated warehouses, robots’ reach exceeds their grasp – podcast IV with Ken Goldberg

Jun 17, 2020

Dex-Net AR uses Apple’s ARKit to train robots to grasp objects

Jun 11, 2020

AI startup building a ‘universal AI for robots’

Jun 16, 2020

Intel, Google, UC Berkeley AI team trains robot to do sutures from video

Jun 11, 2020

UC Berkeley researchers Michael Laskin, Kimin Lee and Pieter Abbeel release open source reinforcement learning with augmented data

May 2, 2020

UC Merced’s award winning Robot Assisted Precision Irrigation Delivery project

April 16, 2020


Grabango chief scientist is world renowned vision researcher UC Berkeley Professor Trevor Darrell

Nov 11, 2019

AI researcher Anca Dragan on helping robots understand humans

Nov 11, 2019

UC Santa Cruz making socially assistive robots – video

Oct 19, 2019

UC Davis SmartFarm helps develop tech savvy farm workers

July 24, 2019

Mike Jordan’s trenchant essay on the state of AI is featured in the first
issue of the Harvard Data Science Review

June 23, 2019

UCSC engineer Ricardo San Felice to lead team of researchers in new Center of Excellence for Assured Autonomy in Contested Environments

May 21, 2019

Rob Wood’s (now at Harvard) untethered bee robot is on the cover of Nature this week.  He’s a Cal PhD…


CITRIS CPAR papers won 3 of the top awards at CASE this year.

July 13, 2018

In this NY Times feature on robot grasping, 3 of the 6 projects are from UC Berkeley’s AUTOLab:

Dex-Net as a Service (DNaaS) is now online to suggest robot grasps for objects you upload.

July 13, 2018

Robots at UC Berkeley take a step forward on NBC featuring Ken Goldberg, Anca Dragan, Andrea Bajscy and Ajay Tanwani

May 13, 2018

HRI article featuring CPAR Anca Dragan and Claire Tomlin

May 3, 2018

How Flight Simulation Tech Can Help Turn Robots Into Surgeons

Mar 1, 2018

WiRed Magazine Article

Anca Dragan and Raluca Ada Popa both awarded Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellowships

Feb 15, 2018

Avideh Zakhor has been named Electronic Imaging Scientist of the Year by the Society for Imaging Science and Technology in recognition of her many important contributions to signal processing, computer vision, and 3D imaging.

“For her significant contributions to signal processing, including 3D image processing & computer vision, 3D reality capture systems,  3D modeling, mapping and positioning,  image and video compression and communication.”

Why AI Won’t Overtake the World, but Is Worth Watching

By Tanya M. Anandan, Contributing Editor, Robotic Industries Association

Jan 25, 2018

“Most of the fear mongering comes from people that are not working in the AI field…People who actually work with robotics realize that although this technology is making great progress, we are far from the humanlike robots portrayed in movies and the press…”

“…Even if robots with the help of AI and human engineering are someday able to approach our dexterity, they may never truly grasp the world around them in all of its fragility and potential. Context and ingenuity will remain in the realm of humans.”


The Education of Brett (Berkeley Robot for the Elimination of Tedious Tasks) the Robot featured on Wired

Sep 21, 2017

Anca Dragan featured in “Innovators Under 35” by MIT Technology Review

July 1, 2017

UC Merced ‘Swarmathon’ Robotics Team Competes at Cape Canaveral

June 1, 2017

“The Most Nimble-Fingered Robot Yet”: video on Dex-Net 2.0 achieving 99% precision from MIT Tech Review

May 25, 2017

New Symposium on Robot Learning (SoRL) at UC Berkeley: May 1, 2017

Leila Takayama gives TED talk on “What’s it like to be a robot?”

April, 2017

UC Berkeley AI4ALL Leader Anca Dragan featured on Medium: “The future of AI needs to have more people in it”

Mar 6, 2017

Fast Company features new CPAR research on robot grasping

Jan 12, 2017

New Conference on Robot Learning (#CoRL2017) in the works: 1st
Nov 13-15, 2017 in Mountain View

CPAR Director Ken Goldberg on Overselling AI: Response in New York Times


CITRIS Seed Funding Proposals due: 27 Jan 2017


CPAR co-sponsored the 12th Workshop on the Algorithmic Foundations of Robotics in San Francisco, December 18-20 2016 that was the largest yet with 175 participants

Congratulations to Pieter Abbeel and Sergey Levine for NIPS Best Paper Award for “Value Iteration Networks”:

PhD Student Dorsa Sadigh and CPAR professors Shankar Sastry and Anca Dragan Featured in IEEE Spectrum: Autonomous Cars Could Determine Your Driving Style by Gently Probing You.

Oct 27, 2016

Research groups lead by CPAR Professors Stefano Carpin, Christopher Kello, and Ramesh Balasubramaniam awarded two of the 30 NSF Research Traineeship (NRT) program grants given out this year. The grants will fund 50 doctoral students and train another 100 graduate students over the course of five years.

Sep 21, 2016

Four CPAR Roboticists, Sergey Levine (UC Berkeley), Oriol Vinyals (Google DeepMind), Adam Bry(Skydio), and Ruzena Bajcsy (UC Berkeley), were named to MIT Technology Review 35 Innovators Under 35 and Seven Innovators Over Seventy Lists.  More information

Aug 26, 2016

Ken Goldberg featured on Steven Johnson’s podcast, “Wonderland: Robots and Charles Babbage” 

Aug 15, 2016

Ken Goldberg featured on, “Berkeley Roboticist Learns Lessons About Humanity from Robots

Aug 15, 2016

Workshop on Algorithmic Foundations of Robotics (WAFR) Deadline Extended to 17 July. This prestigious bi-annual conference returns to the Bay Area Dec 18-21.

Sergey Levine to join CPAR: Sergey Levine will join UC Berkeley’s EECS Dept as Assistant Professor in August to focus on research at the intersection of controls and machine learning


Mark Mueller to join CPAR: Mark Mueller will join UC Berkeley’s ME Dept as Assistant Professor in
July to focus on research in UAV/quadcopter control


Claire Tomlin has been selected to receive the 2017 IEEE Transportation
Technologies Award, which recognizes advances in technologies applied in
transportation systems

June 28, 2016

Ken Goldberg’s students and video featured in IEEE Spectrum story on Medical Robotics

May 31, 2016

Over 300 Bay area high school students participated in the Pioneers in Engineering High School Robotics Final Competition at Lawrence Hall of Science

Apr 24, 2016

Professor Anca Dragan featured in The Atlantic “Robots That Act Differently When You’re Around

Apr 19, 2016

Five CPAR Seed Grants Announced for 2016! 

Apr 8, 2016

More info


Trevor Darrell and UC Berkeley Deep Drive featured in Bloomberg Technology, “Automakers Go Back to School to Learn to Build Self-Driving Cars

Mar 16, 2016

Ken Goldberg Featured in Rolling Stone, “Inside the Artificial Intelligence Revolution: A Special Report, Part 2, Part 2″

Mar 9, 2016

Pieter Abbeel Featured in Rolling Stone, “Inside the Artificial Intelligence Revolution: A Special Report, Part 1, Part 1″

Mar 9, 2016

Bob Full featured in the Daily Californian, “UC Berkeley researchers develop cockroach-inspired, flexible robot” 

Feb 13, 2016

Berkeley/suitX is a semifinalist in Robotics for Good Competition! If they win, this will create a strong initiative to improve the quality of life for children with CP and other mobility disorders. Check out their entry for the competition and recent exoskeleton (Phoenix). Please VOTE at the bottom of the page for benefit of these children who did not have any say in what happened to them.

In the 2016 CITRIS Seed Funding Program, approximately $800K is available to PIs from the 4 campuses for multi-campus projects ($10-60K each).  Robotics is a key Area of Interest.  Applications are due 31 January! Details here:


Student robotics competition at UC Santa Cruz “Robot Wars at UC Santa Cruz”  (KSBW news report)

Dec 4, 2015

Robot Toddler Learns to Stand by Imagining How to do it” (MIT Technology Review)

Nov 6, 2015

Robots: Will They Steal Your Job?” (

Nov 4, 2015

Cal PhD Jun-Ho Oh led the KAIST team that won the DARPA Robot Challenge

UC Berkeley EECS PhD Candate John Schulman released the Computational Graph Toolkit, which facilitates experiments with large recurrent networks.

Sep 1, 2015

Robotics and Deep Learning: New Course and Open-Source Toolkit

UC Berkeley EECS PhD Candate John Schulman is teaching a short course on “Deep Reinforcement Learning.”

Sergey Levine, Chelsea Finn, Trevor Darrell and Pieter Abbeel’s Robot Learning in Bloomberg News

This Preschool Is for Robots: Want machines to learn the way human toddlers do? You need a “classroom” equipped with Lego blocks and plenty of patience. Bloomberg Business News, Jack Clark

Not Your Parent’s Factory: What Next Generation Factories Will Look Like and Deliver

June 18, 2015

Atlantic Washington editor-at-large Steve Clemons hosts a conversation with CITRIS People and Robots Initiative Director Ken Goldberg and Inventor/CEO of Otherlab Saul Griffith. (Bold Bets Conference, The Atlantic)

Relax, the Terminator Is Far Away” (The New York Times)

May 25, 2015

How smart is today’s artificial intelligence?” (PBS Newshour, Interview)

May 8, 2015

People and Robots Initiative promotes wider robotics integration” (Engineering and Technology Magazine)

Apr 22, 2015

CITRIS People and Robots Initiative presents a Distinguished Lecture by John Markoff (New York Times) on “Machines of Loving Grace”

11:00am-12:00pm, 5/7/15, event page