@inproceedings { rato21, abstract = { Social agents should exhibit socially adequate behavior to fit the context they meet. Fitting the context is particular relevant for interactive agents that interact and are being observed by people. Hence, the perceptions of people of such social capabilities are an important concern. Exhibiting socially adequate behavior can more easily be identifiable when in the presence of other social actors. However, even alone, one’s ability to adjust to the context might be socially motivated and interpreted as such. Similarly, intelligent agents may be identified as social beings when acting alone. Moreover, social context is triggered in different ways. In this study, we explore if adaptation to the physical surroundings (e.g., the agent’s location) is enough to shape the perceptions of people observing the agent. We contribute to the study of situated cognition’s role in interpreting an autonomous agent’s behavior. In particular, we explore the impact of behavior changes grounded on the location as a contextual cue on the motivation ascribed by an observer to the agent’s behavior. We implemented a virtual scenario with multiple contexts and one simple character employing a computational model called Cognitive Social Frames that supports behavior change to context. We conducted a user study (n=92) to assess if an observer’s perceptions of intention and motivation are affected by an agent’s capability to adapt to different contexts. Our findings suggest that (a) despite no other agents being present, participants ascribe social motivations to the agent’s adaptive behavior, (b) such attributions are independent of visual cues, and (c) even without any pre-established norms, agents that consistently adjust their behavior to the physical context are perceived as more social.}, address = {New York, NY, USA}, booktitle = {Proceedings of the 9th International Conference on Human-Agent Interaction [Best Paper Award]}, keywords = {Virtual Agents, User Studies, Social Motivations, Social Context;Intelligent Virtual Agents;Multi-Agent Societies;}, pages = {39–46}, publisher = {Association for Computing Machinery}, series = {HAI '21}, title = {Fitting the Room: Social Motivations for Context-Aware Agents}, year = {2021}, author = {Diogo Rato and Marta Couto and Rui Prada} }