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Promoting social interaction through emotional body odours

Promoting social interaction through emotional body odours

Objective

The way chemistry influences human communication is one of the most intriguing and debated topics. More specifically, the nature of chemosignals and their sphere of influence on social interaction is a very important key to understanding human behaviour. POTION proposes a novel technological paradigm to delve deeper into understanding meaningful social interaction, combining new knowledge about the chemical composition of human social chemosignals together with a novel olfactory-based technology designed to drive social behaviour. A first challenging analysis on human chemosignals to delineate the chemical underpinnings of the emotions of happiness and fear will be carried out since they are the representative emotions that drive approach and avoidance behaviour, i.e., the fundamental building blocks of social interaction between individuals of the same species. Results of this analysis will be used to artificially synthetize the chemosignals of these two emotions, which will provide the basis of an innovative computer-controlled odour delivery system able to drive the approach-avoidance social strategy. This breakthrough device will be controlled in a closed loop by the social-emotional state of the subjects evaluated through a novel computational neural model. The POTION system will be applied and tested in both social and clinical scenarios. In the social scenarios, we venture to reveal how olfaction clues work in managing the feelings of trust, presence and inclusion, in both virtual, real, and social media contexts. In the clinical scenario, POTION will propose a new human chemosignal-based diagnosis and treatment for social anxiety, phobias and depression, which are known to all share impaired social functioning. POTION will provide further insight to the fundamental underpinnings of human behaviour with the goal to help establish healthy social relationships through trust, leading to an overall improvement in wellbeing.

Coordinator

UNIVERSITA DI PISA

Address

Lungarno Pacinotti 43/44
56126 Pisa

Italy

Activity type

Higher or Secondary Education Establishments

EU Contribution

€ 1 410 450

Participants (9)

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ISPA CRL

Portugal

EU Contribution

€ 788 645

KAROLINSKA INSTITUTET

Sweden

EU Contribution

€ 759 687,50

SRA INSTRUMENTS SAS

France

EU Contribution

€ 819 168,75

UNIVERSITAT POLITECNICA DE VALENCIA

Spain

EU Contribution

€ 498 925

UNIVERSITY OF ESSEX

United Kingdom

EU Contribution

€ 648 773,75

UNIVERSITA DEGLI STUDI DI PADOVA

Italy

EU Contribution

€ 416 250

INVENTYA VENTURES (EU) LIMITED

Ireland

EU Contribution

€ 426 625

KATHOLIEKE UNIVERSITEIT LEUVEN

Belgium

EU Contribution

€ 424 375

FEEL-ING S.R.L.

Italy

EU Contribution

€ 367 250

Project information

Grant agreement ID: 824153

Status

Ongoing project

  • Start date

    1 January 2019

  • End date

    31 December 2023

Funded under:

H2020-EU.1.2.2.

  • Overall budget:

    € 6 560 150

  • EU contribution

    € 6 560 150

Coordinated by:

UNIVERSITA DI PISA

Italy