Marketing robot services in hospitality and tourism: the role of anthropomorphism

Jamie Murphy, Ulrike Gretzel, Juho Pesonen
  • Journal of Travel & Tourism Marketing, February 2019, Taylor & Francis
  • DOI: 10.1080/10548408.2019.1571983

Does it matter that service robots in tourism and hospitality-contexts look/sound/act like humans?

Photo by Alex Knight on Unsplash

Photo by Alex Knight on Unsplash

What is it about?

We explore what designing service robots to be human-like involves and if/how it could affect consumers' acceptance of and interactions with robots in tourism and hospitality contexts.

Why is it important?

Tourism and hospitality establishments increasingly take advantage of robots to automate service processes. We need to understand how robot design decisions will influence the way these robotic services are consumed and managed.


Dr. Ulrike Gretzel
University of Southern California

We currently have robots that strive to resemble humans and robots that look/act/sound nothing like humans. Does their level of anthropomorphism have any effects on the service they provide? I think we need to urgently find answers to the questions raised in the paper to inform robot design and robot adoption by service industries.

Juho Pesonen

We will need robots in the future to support our society. Understanding the interaction between humans and robots is an important factor contributing to technology adoption. It is not just about how consumers perceive robots, but also how human employees perceive them and can utilize them to improve their own work.

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The following have contributed to this page: Dr. Ulrike Gretzel and Juho Pesonen