Designing for Trust

2019-02-26T19:30:34Z (GMT) by Meric Dagli
Trust can be thought of as one of the currencies that humans
use to accept a technology in their everyday lives. One of those
technologies are conversational agents (also known as chatbots)
like digital assistants in our smartphones. To provide a more
personal experience, increasing number of businesses are
developing virtual agents with conversational interfaces by
personifying their products and services through automation.
While some agents are generalists like voice-based personal
assistants, many of them are specialist agents that are designed for
specific tasks in different domains including e-commerce. As user
expectations get more complex each day, a collaboration between
specialist agents is needed. In such a scenario, users’ trust level
may change dynamically due to the agent hand-offs. Additionally,
despite many offered benefits, many people hesitate to trust
conversational agents with complex tasks in certain e-commerce
scenarios such as travel booking.

This design research project explores trust issues with virtual
e-commerce agents in several collaboration scenarios between
generalist and specialist agents and provides design guidelines for
more trustworthy conversational agents.