Tracking the leader: Gaze behaviour in group interactions

Francesca Capozzi, Cigdem Beyan, Antonio Pierro, Atesh Koul, Vittorio Murino, Stefano Livi, Andrew P. Bayliss, Jelena Ristic, Cristina Becchio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)
44 Downloads (Pure)


Can social gaze behaviour reveal the leader during real-world group interactions? To answer this question, we developed a novel tripartite approach combining i) computer vision methods for remote gaze estimation, ii) a detailed taxonomy to encode the implicit semantics of multi-party gaze features, and iii) machine learning methods to establish dependencies between leadership and visual behaviours. We found that social gaze behaviour distinctively identified group leaders. Crucially, the relationship between leadership and gaze behaviour generalized across democratic and autocratic leadership styles under conditions of low and high time-pressure, suggesting that gaze can serve as a general marker of leadership. These findings provide the first direct evidence that group visual patterns can reveal leadership across different social behaviours and validate a new promising method for monitoring natural group interactions.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)242-249
Number of pages8
Early online date28 May 2019
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2019

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