Measuring the Effect of Mental Health Chatbot Personality on User Engagement

Joonas Moilanen, Aku Visuri, Sharadhi Alape Suryanarayana, Andy Alorwu, Koji Yatani, Simo Hosio

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Artificial Intelligence is seen as humanity's current best bet to solve the looming crisis in healthcare. Conversational Agents, or chatbots, rely on advances in AI and are increasingly investigated in the context of digital mental health care. Given how they are end-user-facing and interactive communication tools, the user engagement felt when interacting with the bots is a critical consideration. In this work, we examine the effects of chatbot personalities on the experienced user engagement with the bot. We employed personalities that rely on the Big-5 Personality Theory. Among other findings, our quantitative results indicate that a highly conscientious chatbot is likely to foster the highest user engagement. Our qualitative and content analysis also reveals desired and undesired personality features for future mental health chatbots. We discuss our findings in light of digital mental health and propose novel research directions.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of MUM 2022, the 21st International Conference on Mobile and Ubiquitous Multimedia
EditorsTanja Doring, Susanne Boll, Ashley Colley, Augusto Esteves, Joao Guerreiro
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery
Number of pages13
ISBN (Electronic)9781450398213
StatePublished - 27 Nov 2022
Externally publishedYes
Event21st International Conference on Mobile and Ubiquitous Multimedia, MUM 2022 - Lisbon, Portugal
Duration: 27 Nov 202230 Nov 2022

Publication series

NameACM International Conference Proceeding Series


Conference21st International Conference on Mobile and Ubiquitous Multimedia, MUM 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 Owner/Author.


This research is connected to the GenZ strategic profiling project at the University of Oulu, supported by the Academy of Finland (project number 318930) and CRITICAL (Academy of Finland Strategic Research, 335729). Part of the work was also carried out with the support of Biocenter Oulu, spearhead of project ICON.

FundersFunder number
Academy of Finland318930
Biocenter, University of Oulu


    • big five
    • chatbot
    • conversational agent
    • mental health
    • personality
    • self-care
    • user engagement


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