IROS 2019 Workshop on

Manipulation through Contacts:

Bridging the Gap between Research Community and Industry


We are seeing a growing need of dexterity in robotic manipulation beyond grasping. Such dexterity is usually motivated by a creative use of contacts, where these contacts can come from robot hands, arms, or any objects and fixtures in the environment. An intelligent robot can manipulate an object or its own body by exploiting the geometric and force constraints offered through contacts. Such skillful use of contact interactions could be crucial for realizing dexterous, reactive and robust robotic manipulation as well as mobile legged locomotion (self-manipulation).

While highly desired, such contact-rich manipulation comes with its own challenges – from noisy sensors to computationally demanding planning and control frameworks. While the recent research has proposed efficient algorithms and solutions for dexterous and robust manipulation, the industrial applications are seldom seen. This workshop aims to address and hopefully bridge this gap by inviting leading researchers from academia to discuss the recent advances in the field and industry experts to share their experiences and needs from the contact-rich robotic manipulation in industry. We hope this workshop can encourage discussions about possible transfers between the academic results and industrial applications.

Topics of interest

Call for Open Talks

In this workshop, we have a one-hour open talk session for those who want to share their work on related fields. Application is open to both academia and industry.


Each speaker will speak for 3~5 minutes, followed by a 2min Q&A. Instead of using slides, please record a video (3~5 min) of your slides.

How to apply

Please send an email to ‘’ with title “Application for open talk”. Please include the following information in your email:

Please apply early, as the positions are limited.

Important dates

Applications must be received before October 1st.

List of open talks

A list will be available before the workshop.

Invited Speakers

(Alphabetical order)

Pieter Abbeel, UC Berkeley/, website

I-Ming Chen, Nanyang Technological University, website

Kensuke Harada, Osaka University, website

Oliver Kroemer, Carnegie Mellon University, website

Miao Li, Wuhan University/Cobot Technology Co., website

Huan Liu, MUJIN Inc., website

Maximo Roa, DLR German Aerospace Center, website

Alberto Rodriguez, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, website

Siddhartha Srinivasa, University of Washington, website

Russ Tedrake, Massachusetts Institute of Technology/Toyota Research Institute, website

Tao Wang, Dorabot Inc., website

Peter Kuan-Ting Yu, XYZ Robotics Inc., website

Ruobing Yu, AI Data Innovations, website

Program (Tentative)

Time Speaker Organization
9:00-9:15 Opening  
9:15-9:40 Pieter Abbeel UC Berkeley, USA
9:40-10:05 Kensuke Harada Osaka Univ., JAPAN
10:05-10:30 Tao Wang Dorabot Inc., CHINA
10:30-11:00 Coffee break  
11:00-11:25 Maximo Roa DLR, GERMANY
11:25-11:50 Alberto Rodriguez MIT, USA
11:50-12:15 Miao Li Cobot Inc., CHINA
12:15-13:00 Open talks Open for application (10min each)
13:00-14:00 Lunch break  
14:00-14:25 Sidd Srinivasa Univ. Washington, USA
14:25-14:50 I-Ming Chen NTU, SINGAPORE
14:50-15:15 Ruobing Yu AI Data Innovations, USA
15:15-15:40 Huan Liu Mujin Inc., JAPAN
15:40 – 16:10 Coffee break  
16:10-16:35 Oliver Kroemer CMU, USA
16:35-17:00 Russ Tedrake MIT/Toyota Research Inst., USA
17:00-17:25 Peter Yu XYZ Robotics Inc., USA
17:25-18:25 Discussion  
18:30 End  


Main Organizer