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Letting AI make decisions for me: an empirical examination of hotel guests’ acceptance of technology agency

Cristian Morosan (Conrad N. Hilton College of Global Hospitality Leadership, University of Houston, Houston, Texas, USA)
Aslıhan Dursun-Cengizci (College of Tourism, Antalya Bilim University, Antalya, Turkey and Conrad N. Hilton College of Global Hospitality Leadership, University of Houston, Houston, Texas, USA)

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management

ISSN: 0959-6119

Article publication date: 13 June 2023

Issue publication date: 30 January 2024

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Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to examine hotel guests’ acceptance of technology agency – the extent to which they would let artificial intelligence (AI)-based systems make decisions for them when staying in hotels. The examination was conducted through the prism of several antecedents of acceptance of technology agency, including perceived ethics, benefits, risks and convenience orientation.

Design/methodology/approach

A thorough literature review provided the foundation of the structural model, which was tested using confirmatory factor analysis, followed by structural equation modeling. Data were collected from 400 US hotel guests.

Findings

The most important determinant of acceptance of technology agency was perceived ethics, followed by benefits. Risks of using AI-based systems to make decisions for consumers had a negative impact on acceptance of technology agency. In addition, perceived loss of competence and unpredictability had relatively strong impacts on risks.

Research limitations/implications

The results provide a conceptual foundation for research on systems that make decisions for consumers. As AI is increasingly incorporated in the business models of hotel companies to make decisions, ensuring that the decisions are perceived as ethical and beneficial for consumers is critical to increase the utilization of such systems.

Originality/value

Most research on AI in hospitality is either conceptual or focuses on consumers’ intentions to stay in hotels that may be equipped with AI technologies. Occupying a unique position within the literature, this study discusses the first time AI-based systems that make decisions for consumers. The value of this study stems from the examination of the main concept of technology agency, which was never examined in hospitality.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

This study is based on a project supported by The Scientific and Technological Research Council of Türkiye (TUBITAK- Project No. 1059B192100499) and the Conrad N. Hilton College of Global Hospitality Leadership, University of Houston.

Citation

Morosan, C. and Dursun-Cengizci, A. (2024), "Letting AI make decisions for me: an empirical examination of hotel guests’ acceptance of technology agency", International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, Vol. 36 No. 3, pp. 946-974. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJCHM-08-2022-1041

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2023, Emerald Publishing Limited

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