Working Robots Podcast


Welcome to the Working Robots podcast!

Working Robots is a podcast that is centered on discussing the social impact of robotics and artificial intelligence (AI) on the economy and workforce.

Our first series focuses on how self-driving cars will influence the future of work. Each episode is structured as an interview with a person from a unique relationship to self-driving car technology (such as researcher experts in artificial intelligence, workers in the automotive industry, and every-day people using self-driving car technology today), and focuses on the concerns and questions of directly-impacted laypersons from underrepresented groups so as to raise greater awareness of the individual identities and narratives of those who are affected.

Across the interviews, we focus on questions such as:

  • What are self-driving cars? How do they work? What are they like today?
  • What impact will self-driving cars have on the economy and the future of work? What industries will they impact and how will those industries adapt?
  • What are the dangers of self-driving cars? What security and safety risks are involved with deploying self-driving cars at scale?
  • What should policy-makers focus on to ensure fair deployment of self-driving car technology?

You can listen to the episodes below, or jump to the playlist.



Episode 1: Introduction (06:11)

This short episode introduces what the working podcast is and the interviewers. It gives an idea of our motivation.


Episode 2: Researcher | Conversation with Michael Littman and Dave Ackley (55:52)
Interview date: June 26th, 2019

This episode is a conversation with Michael Littman and David Ackley. They are both academics in computer science with expertise in artificial intelligence and machine learning. Michael is a Professor at Brown University and an expert in machine learning, reinforcement learning, and decision making under uncertainty. David is an emeritus associate professor at the University of New Mexico who studies neural networks, machine learning, evolutionary algorithms, and artificial life, and biological approaches to security, architecture, and models of computation.  This offers a perspective of academic experts who have done a lot of work in research behind the scenes of the self-driving car technology.


Episode 3: Manager | Conversation with Andrew Dykman (41:01)
Interview date: May 5th, 2020

This episode is a conversation with Andrew Dykman. At the time of the interview, he was a Field Engineering Manager at the autonomous driving company May Mobility, May Mobility aims to build autonomous mobility solutions, such as autonomous shuttles, for city public transportation services, with a mission to make them safer and more accessible. This offers a perspective of a business manager slash executive at a self-driving car company in the industry. 


Episode 4: Worker | Conversation with Rick Steshetz (33:33)
Interview date: July 17th, 2019

This episode is a conversation with Rick Steshetz, who has been a worker at the Chrysler automotive factory plant in Detroit for over twenty years. This episode offers a unique combination of the perspective from an automotive industry worker as well as an observer of the technological advances in self-driving technology.


Episode 5: Driver | Conversation with Dave Harding (41:40)
Interview date: June 12th, 2020

This episode is a conversation with David Harding. He is an owner of Tesla Model 3, who lives in Califronia. This provides a perspective from someone who gets to use the technology as it is today.





About Us

Arthur Wandzel 

Eric Rosen 

Kaiyu Zheng 

Peter Haas

Michael Littman

Stefanie Tellex