Dynamics of Signal Exchanges and Empathic Systems

Anna Costanza Baldry
Ufficiale al Merito della Repubblica Italiana
Full Professor of Social Psychology
Department of Psychology, Università degli studi della Campania “Luigi Vanvitelli”
I was not afraid of the words of the violent, but of the silence of the honest” (ML King)

Special Session of the 29th Italian Workshop on Neural Networks WIRN 2019

WIRN 2019 is sponsored by the Italian Society of Neural Networks (SIREN, http://www.siren.international/) in co‐operation with the International Institute for Advanced Scientific Studies (IIASS, www.iiassvietri.it)

June 12-14, 2019, Vietri sul Mare, Salerno, Italy.
Instructions on how to reach the Conference Location are on www.iiassvietri.it


The word Empathic Systems, added to the title of this special session, has two meanings:

  1. It is intended to celebrate Anna Costanza Baldry. Her unexpected loss had left a huge emptiness and shattered all of us.  Anna was fighting violence against women. Empathy was a blessing and a curse since suggested the right way to help but forced her to share the suffering of abused women.
  2. It puts emphasis on Empathic Systems, considering that empathy is central for successful social interactional exchanges and challenging for our Projects “Empathic”, www.empathic-project.eu/ and “Menhir”, https://cordis.europa.eu/project/rcn/218542/factsheet/en aiming  to add insights to the development of socially and emotionally believable automatic systems.

The themes of this special session are multidisciplinary in nature, and closely connected in their final aims to identifying features from realistic dynamics of signal exchanges. Such dynamics characterize, formal and informal social signals, communication modes, hearing and vision processes, and brain functionalities.  Of particular interest are analyses of visual, written and auditory information and corresponding computational efforts to automatically detect and interpret their semantic and pragmatic contents. Related applications of these interdisciplinary facets are ICT interfaces able to detect health and affective states of their users, interpret their psychological and behavioral patterns and support them through positively designed interventions aiming at improving their quality of life.


Relevant topics thus include but are not limited to:

  • Empathic conversational systems and agents
  • Applications for mental health and wellbeing
  • Signals for detecting affective wellbeing and emotional states
  • Detection of health and psychological states from multimodal signals
  • Social networks for information spread and share
  • Empathic ICT interfaces
  • Computational Architectures for Affective Systems
  • Supervised and Unsupervised Learning Algorithms in Affective Systems
  • Human and/or machine encoding and decoding of behavioral patterns
  • Human daily cognitive activities


Anna Esposito, Anna Sorrentino, Antonietta M. Esposito, Gennaro Cordasco, Nelson Mauro Maldonato, Francesco Carlo Morabito, Maria Ines Torres, Stephan Schlögl, Zoraida Callejas

Anna Esposito is with the Università della Campania “Luigi Vanvitelli”, Department of Psychology and the International Institute for Advanced Scientific Studies (IIASS), Italy. Email:  iiass.annaesp@tin.it

Anna Sorrentino is with the Università della Campania “Luigi Vanvitelli”, Department of Psychology, Italy. Email: anna.sorrentino@unicampania.it

Antonietta M. Esposito is with the Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia, Sezione di Napoli Osservatorio Vesuviano, Napoli, Italy. Email:  antonietta.esposito@ingv.it

Gennaro Cordasco is with the Università della Campania “Luigi Vanvitelli”, Department of Psychology and the International Institute for Advanced Scientific Studies (IIASS), Italy. Email: gennaro.cordasco@unicampania.it

Nelson Mauro Maldonato is with the Università di Napoli “Federico II”, Dipartimento di Neuroscienze and Reproductive Odontostomatological Sciences, Italy. Email: nelsonmauro.maldonato@unina.it

Francesco Carlo Morabito is with the Università degli Studi “Mediterranea” di Reggio Calabria, Italy. Email:  morabito@unirc.it;

Maria Ines Torres is with the Universidad del País Vasco/Euskal Herriko Unibertsitatea (UPV/EHU), Spain. Email: manes.torres@ehu.es

Stephan Schlögl is with the MCI Management Center Innsbruck, Department Management Communication & IT, Austria. Email: stephan.schloegl@mci.edu

Zoraida Callejas is with University of Granada, Departamento de Lenguajes y Sistemas Informáticos, Granada, Spain. Email: zoraida@ugr.es


  • Paper Submission Deadline: May 10 2019 (2 pages extended abstract uploaded to Easy Chair)
  • Notification of acceptance: May 30, 2019
  • Camera-ready copy: June 1 0 2019 (final paper submission max. 8-10 pages)
  • Conference Dates: June 12-14, 2019


  • The accepted contributions will be published by the Springer series on “Smart Innovation Systems and Technologies” (see http://www.springer.com/series/8767 for formatting guidelines and templates). The maximum length of a full paper is 8-10 pages. All manuscripts should be submitted through the Easy Chair  conference system using the following link: https://easychair.org/conferences/?conf=wirn2019
  • When logged into Easy Chair please specify the name of the special session as: “Dynamics of Signal Exchanges and Empathic Systems”
  • Please do not hesitate to contact Anna Esposito (Email: iiass.annaesp@tin.it) or Gennaro Cordasco (cordasco@unicaimpania.it) for further clarifications


  • The registration fee is 250 euros and includes the social dinner. Registration can be done on site (using cash) or through bank transfer (the receipt must be exhibited at the conference).
> > Account Holder: SIREN – Società Italiana Reti Neuroniche,
Via G. Pellegrino, 19, 84019
Vietri sul Mare (SA), Italy
>> Bank Name: UBI-Banca
> > Branch: Filiale di Salerno – Via G. Cuomo, 29 – Agenzia [6664]
>> IBAN: IT 96N03 1111 52010000000 22400
>> Reason: WIRN 2019 conference