Zhi Jane Li

Prof-JaneAssistant Professor

  • Email: zli11@wpi.edu
  • Office: 85 Prescott 223C
  • Lab: 85 Prescott 224
  • Tel: (508) 831-6351


Position Held

  • 2017/01-present, Assistant Professor, Robotics Engineering Department, Worcester Polytechnic Institute
  • 2015/01-2016/05, Postdoctoral Associate, Duke University
  • 2009/09-2014/12, Research/Teaching Assistant, University of California, Santa Cruz
  • 2012/06-2012/09, Software engineer, Polaris Wireless
  • 2007/01-2009/04, Research/Teaching assistant, University of Victoria, BC, Canada

Research Interest

I am an Assistant Professor with the Robotics Engineering Department, with an affiliation in Department of Mechanical Engineering, at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (Worcester, MA) since 2017. My research aims to bridge the gap between human-robot interaction and human movement science. My current research focuses on the design of Human-Robot Interaction and Interfaces based on the behavior and preference in the Perception-Action Coupling of human motor control, for the applications on Tele-Nursing Robots. I have been collaborating closely with the faculty of the Nursing Department at Worcester State University, (Worcester, MA).

Recent Publications


Professional Service

  • Associate Editor
    • International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA) 2019, 2020, and 2021
    • Ubiquitous Robots (UR) 2019 and 2020
  • Reviewer for Journal & Conference Proceedings
    • IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA) and RA-Letter,
    • International Conference on Human-Computer Interaction (HCI)
    • Dynamic Systems and Control Conference (DSCC)
    • International Conference on Intelligent Robots
    • Ubiquitous Robots
    • PLOS ONE

Invited talks & Presentations

  • 2020/11/14, Invited talk at 12th International Conference on Social Robotics (ICSR 2020) workshop on “Safe Human-Robot Interaction: Sensing, Modeling, and Learning
    • Title: Perception-Action Coupling and Nursing Robot Teleoperation Interfaces
  • 2019/03/08, Invited talk at Brown University
  • 2019/02/22, Invited talk at University of New Hampshire
  • 2019/02/20, Invited talk at Worcester State University
    • Title: Tele-robotic intelligent nursing assistant
  • 2017/06/02, Presentation at IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA) 2017, Singapore, 29 May-3 June, 2017
    • Title: A Study of Bidirectionally Telepresent Tele-Action During Robot-Mediated Handover
    • Title: Development of a Tele-Nursing Mobile Manipulator for Remote Care-giving in Quarantine Areas
  • 2016/12/13, Presentation at NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL),
    • Title: Toward Synergy of Human and Robotic Systems
  • 2015/08, Presentation at IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society (EMBC)
    • Title: A Novel Method for Quantifying Arm Motion Similarity
  • 2015/06, Presentation at Robotics: Science and Systems (RSS), Human-Robot Handover Workshop
    • Predicting Object Transfer Position and Timing in Human-robot Handover Tasks
  • 2009/08, Presentation at IEEE International Conference on Mechatronics and Automation (ICMA)
    • Title: Comparison of Power- and Wave-based Control of Remote Dynamic Proxies for Networked Haptic Cooperation


  • 2014/09-2014/12, Teaching assistant sabbatical, for outstanding TA service
  • 2011, Mei Wang Fellowship for Women in Computer Engineering, University of California, Santa Cruz
  • AY 2009-2010, University of California, Regent Fellowship