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Article
Publication date: 8 October 2020

Yuxiang Chris Zhao, Yan Zhang, Jian Tang and Shijie Song

In the domain of information science, affordance is a relatively new concept that deserves further exploration. It may serve as a bridge to narrow the research-practice…

Abstract

Purpose

In the domain of information science, affordance is a relatively new concept that deserves further exploration. It may serve as a bridge to narrow the research-practice gap that has persisted in information studies. Building upon previous research, we call for a broader concept of affordance that would help researchers understand information practices from an ecological perspective.

Design/methodology/approach

The study focuses on conceptualizing affordances for information practices in order to theorize engagement among people, technology, and sociocultural environments. We develop a hierarchical model and a component model to illustrate how key tenets of affordances can be linked with the decomposition of activities and its mechanism. Following this, we describe an illustrative case of a popular Chinese cloud-based music platform to demonstrate the utility of our conceptual frameworks in guiding studies of information practices.

Findings

The study proposes to shift the focus of technology affordances, which highlights the features and functions of particular technologies, to the affordances for practices that are enacted through technology and social construction within a sociocultural environment. The illustrative case of the cloud-based music platform shows that the proposed models can provide a structured view of operations, actions and motives for music information practices. The processes of internalization and externalization offer insight into the decomposition of information practice as a chain of activity-action-operation.

Originality/value

This study contributes to the literature on theorizing engagement among people, technology and sociocultural environments through the theoretical lens of affordances and sheds new light on the challenges of information practice.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. 77 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

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Article
Publication date: 4 November 2014

Yuxiang Chris Zhao and Qinghua Zhu

The rapid development of Web 2.0 and social media enables the rise of crowdsourcing. Crowdsourcing contest is a typical case of crowdsourcing and has been adopted by many…

Abstract

Purpose

The rapid development of Web 2.0 and social media enables the rise of crowdsourcing. Crowdsourcing contest is a typical case of crowdsourcing and has been adopted by many organisations for business solution and decision making. From a participant's perspective, it is interesting to explore what motivates people to participate in crowdsourcing contest. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the category of motivation based on self-determination theory and synthesises various motivation factors in crowdsourcing contest. Meanwhile, perceived motivational affordances and task granularity are also examined as the moderate constructs.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper builds a conceptual model to illustrate the relationships between various motivations (extrinsic and intrinsic) and participation effort under the moderating of perceived motivational affordances and task granularity. An empirical study is conducted to test the research model by surveying the Chinese participants of crowdsourcing contest.

Findings

The results show that various motivations might play different roles in relating to participation effort expended in the crowdsourcing contest. Moreover, task granularity may positively moderate the relationship between external motivation and participation effort. The results also show that supporting of a participant's perceived motivational affordances might strengthen the relationship between the individual's motivation with an internal focus (intrinsic, integrated, identified and introjected motivation) and participation effort.

Originality/value

Overall, the research has some conceptual and theoretical implications to the literature. This study synthesises various motivation factors identified by previous studies in crowdsourcing projects or communities as a form of motivation spectrum, namely external, introjected, identified, integrated and intrinsic motivation, which contributes to the motivation literatures. Meanwhile, the findings indicate that various motivations might play different roles in relating to participation effort expended in the crowdsourcing contest. Also, the study theoretically extends the crowdsourcing participation research to incorporate the effects of perceived motivational affordances in crowdsourcing contest. In addition, the study may yield some practical implications for sponsors, managers and designers in crowdsourcing contest.

Details

Online Information Review, vol. 38 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1468-4527

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 13 November 2018

Jian Tang and Ping Zhang

Drawing upon the motivational affordance theory, this paper aims to investigate how gamification design and human motivational needs are associated in extant literature.

Abstract

Purpose

Drawing upon the motivational affordance theory, this paper aims to investigate how gamification design and human motivational needs are associated in extant literature.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors conducted a literature analysis of 60 journal articles that studied motivational influences of gamification in information technology design. Content analysis was used to identify game design features and motivation variables studied in prior literature, and correspondence analysis was used to show the co-occurrence of game design features and basic motivational needs.

Findings

The results showed that four types of game design features and eight basic motivational needs are studied in this pool of literature. Correspondence analysis indicates some interesting associations between game design features and basic human needs.

Research limitations/implications

This research used a motivational affordance perspective to interpret the impact of game design features and suggested directions for future investigations. It is limited due to its sample size and considered as an exploratory study.

Practical implications

This research provided suggestions for technology designers that game design features vary in their motivational influence, and therefore, game design features should be used accordingly to meet users’ motivational needs.

Originality/value

This research is one of initial studies which explored the association between game design features and basic motivational needs. The findings of this study provide the groundwork for guidelines and strategies to facilitate motivational design in information technology.

Details

International Journal of Crowd Science, vol. 3 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2398-7294

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 20 May 2021

Ana Carolina Tomé Klock, Eetu Wallius and Juho Hamari

Several freight operations rely on human cognition and behavior. Tackling these aspects, gamification transforms activities to resemble game-like experiences. Since the…

Abstract

Purpose

Several freight operations rely on human cognition and behavior. Tackling these aspects, gamification transforms activities to resemble game-like experiences. Since the freight transportation sector is rapidly adopting gamification, the purpose of this study is to provide an overview that synthesizes the state-of-the-art and plot future directions for research and the practice of gamifying this area.

Design/methodology/approach

A systematic review of the gamification of freight transportation was conducted. After screening 691 studies, 40 relevant studies were analyzed.

Findings

Most studies found positive psychological and behavioral outcomes from gamification. Literature mainly focused on tackling the operational-level issues of road and maritime transportation modes by implementing simulation games.

Research limitations/implications

Besides elaborating how gamification can improve freight transportation, the authors describe directions still uncovered by the current corpus, such as research design and temporality and the variety of modes and tasks.

Practical implications

Practical implications emerged from the studies, primarily focusing on understanding users, tasks and contexts, targeting different audiences and transportation modalities, and balancing motivational affordances, while considering the demands of the freight transportation domain, including dynamic, spatially dispersed environments and cooperation between multiple stakeholders.

Social implications

The transportation of goods dominates much of the global economy and ecology. Therefore, gamifying this domain has a huge societal impact potential, especially related to issues of sharing economy, safety, environmental sustainability and social media.

Originality/value

Beyond providing an original overview of gamified freight transportation, this study maps current research gaps and describes practical recommendations.

Details

International Journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics Management, vol. 51 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0960-0035

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 5 June 2020

Donghee Shin and Yujong Hwang

This study takes an affordance approach to explain how users perceive the affordance of user action within blockchain and examines how it influences the subsequent user…

Abstract

Purpose

This study takes an affordance approach to explain how users perceive the affordance of user action within blockchain and examines how it influences the subsequent user experience. Focusing on the effect of trust on cognitive processes, the authors analyze how affordances in blockchains affect the user experience.

Design/methodology/approach

The blockchain affordances are examined through a two-stage process. The authors employ a qualitative analysis based on insights gained from the current literature and interviews. The authors then apply a quantitative survey to examine the role of trust in interactions with blockchain services. A structural user model was tested in which their appreciation of affordances of blockchain predicted the trust and satisfaction.

Findings

Users' appreciation for transparency and reliability explained to what extent they trust and are satisfied, thereby suggesting the heuristic roles of trust in blockchains. The study findings indicate a heuristic role for trust regarding underlying links to technological and affective affordances. A user's cognitive heuristics affect their attitudes toward blockchain, in which technological features are processed through users' perceptions and experience.

Research limitations/implications

The model contributes to the conceptualization of security, privacy and traceability along with trust, which is then linked to transparency and reliability. The findings show how the frame of affordances gains explanatory power by being linked to the concepts of affect and emotion. The heuristics of direct perception of security–traceability–privacy (STP) can be used to understand the trajectory of heuristics and ongoing choices of blockchain.

Practical implications

The study results offer a lens through which to address the technology's most common problems by pairing user experience principles and heuristics to blockchain technologies. This study offers insights into the understanding of user actions related to blockchains and into practical implications for developing trust-based services. The results guide the application and tailoring of motivational affordances in blockchain.

Originality/value

While blockchain technology has gained popularity and momentum, there has been little research on how specific features of blockchain technology create value. This study contributes to the research gap by highlighting the role and dimension of trust in relation to STP in blockchains and provides meaningful implications for theory and practice.

Details

Online Information Review, vol. 44 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1468-4527

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 7 August 2018

A.K.M. Najmul Islam, Matti Mäntymäki and Izak Benbasat

Self-promotion on social networking sites (SNSs) is a controversial issue as it has been attributed to various positive and negative consequences. To better understand the…

Abstract

Purpose

Self-promotion on social networking sites (SNSs) is a controversial issue as it has been attributed to various positive and negative consequences. To better understand the reasons for the mixed consequences and the nature of self-promotion on SNSs, the purpose of this paper is to theorize and empirically investigate the duality of SNS self-promotion and its underlying socio-psychological mechanisms.

Design/methodology/approach

By drawing on the motivational affordance lens and self-determination theory, this study develops a theoretical account of the duality of self-promotion on SNSs. The author places subjective vitality and SNS addiction as the positive and negative consequences of self-promotion. The model was tested using partial least squares technique with data collected from 289 Finnish Facebook users using a survey.

Findings

The results show that self-promotion contributes to both subjective vitality and to SNS addiction. Importantly, exhibitionism attenuates the effect of self-promotion on subjective vitality and amplifies the effect of self-promotion on SNS addiction. The feature-level analysis shows that status updates, adding photos, commenting in others’ posts and profile completeness are the main determinants of self-promotion. Status updates, adding photos and check-ins, in turn, have high exhibitionistic appeal.

Originality/value

To date, the empirical attempts to investigate the duality of SNS use have been rare. In particular, prior research is largely silent in explaining what tilt the outcomes of self-promotion either toward positive or negative direction. The paper fills this theoretical and empirical gap and thus contributes to literature on dualities of SNS use.

Details

Information Technology & People, vol. 32 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-3845

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 20 November 2020

Jialiang Huang and Liyun Zhou

Recently, both practitioners and researchers are beginning to recognize the great potential of social gamification in green information technology (IT) services. This…

Abstract

Purpose

Recently, both practitioners and researchers are beginning to recognize the great potential of social gamification in green information technology (IT) services. This study focuses on the roles of three social gamification affordances (interactivity, cooperation and competition) in gamified green IT services use, from the perspectives of recognition and social overload.

Design/methodology/approach

An online survey is conducted to examine the research model using structural equation modeling with users of Ant Forest, which is an example of green IT services in China.

Findings

Results indicate that interactivity, cooperation and competition can positively affect recognition, which further positively affects green IT services use; however, interactivity and cooperation can increase social overload, which negatively affects green IT services use.

Originality/value

This study provides new insights into the effects of social gamification affordances in green IT services by investigating the effects of interactivity, cooperation and competition on recognition and social overload. In addition, this study highlights the positive effect of recognition and negative effect of social overload on gamified green IT services use, extending the literature reviews surrounding gamified services use.

Details

Internet Research, vol. 31 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1066-2243

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Article
Publication date: 1 March 2013

Yuxiang Zhao, Jiang Liu, Jian Tang and Qinghua Zhu

The purpose of this paper is to theoretically develop the concept of perceived affordance based on the existing studies, and to construct a conceptual framework to show…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to theoretically develop the concept of perceived affordance based on the existing studies, and to construct a conceptual framework to show how perceived affordances can facilitate the interaction design of social media.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper provides a review of the relevant literature on affordance and perceived affordance, and conceptually proposes a typology of perceived affordances in social media and an integrative framework for interaction design from sociomateriality perspective. Furthermore, a brief empirical example on the interaction design of crowdsourcing systems is used to ground and illustrate the authors' conceptual framework.

Findings

The paper shows that the perceived affordances may have multi‐facet characteristics and the interaction design of social media should reflect the multi‐dimensional perceived affordances. The perceived affordances can support or facilitate the design of basic elements of social media, such as content and form, to enhance both usability (human‐computer interaction) and sociability (human‐human interaction). A position of constitutive entanglement does not privilege either users or social media artifacts, nor does it provide a rigid triangle among these three components. Instead, the perceived affordances play a critical role in integrating the key components in social media interaction design as an ensemble.

Originality/value

The paper attempts to explore and develop the concept of perceived affordance and employ it as a theoretical lens to underpin interaction design of social media. Overall, the authors' study contributes to the design science literature in the information management field by elaborating a new theoretical perspective and providing a conceptual framework for the researchers and designers.

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Article
Publication date: 13 July 2021

Isabel Oliveira Jordao do Amaral and Minhyung Kang

This research investigates the detailed mechanisms of how gamification affordances influence intrinsic and internalized extrinsic motivation and ultimately improve the…

Abstract

Purpose

This research investigates the detailed mechanisms of how gamification affordances influence intrinsic and internalized extrinsic motivation and ultimately improve the quality and quantity of knowledge contribution.

Design/methodology/approach

Survey responses from 154 users of Stack Overflow in Portuguese were analyzed by the partial least squares–structural equation modeling approach to validate the research model.

Findings

Challenge and goal setting influence individuals to reach the flow state, which increases the quantity of knowledge contribution. Rewards enhance the quality of knowledge contribution through perceived self-worth. Social comparison increases perceived reputation, but its impact does not ultimately lead to knowledge contribution.

Originality/value

The current study differentiated types of motivation and dimensions of knowledge contribution when exploring the effects of gamification affordances. This perspective was proven helpful to understand the various gamification affordances' influence on knowledge contribution.

Details

Aslib Journal of Information Management, vol. 73 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2050-3806

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 14 November 2016

Yuxiang (Chris) Zhao and Qinghua Zhu

The purpose of this paper is to present a new concept – task affordance in crowdsourcing context, and build it as a theoretical lens to help the authors reconfigure the…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to present a new concept – task affordance in crowdsourcing context, and build it as a theoretical lens to help the authors reconfigure the artifacts and process in task-oriented crowdsourcing projects. The paper differs from previous studies by focusing on the relationships between the task artifacts, systems and goal-directed actors in crowdsourcing process rather than on the pure examination of task properties.

Design/methodology/approach

An operational definition of task affordance was proposed and a pseudo-entity-relationship model based approach was employed to portrait the task affordance in online crowdsourcing context. Furthermore, the authors developed a typology of task affordance and decomposed the concept into five dimensions, namely, design affordance, presentation affordance, assignment affordance, task-platform fit affordance, and task-worker fit affordance. A preliminary analysis of task affordances across various crowdsourcing categories was also conducted to validate the proposed typological framework.

Findings

The findings show that the task affordances have varying degree and extend among the diverse crowdsourcing categories. For instance, task design affordances seem to be low in the crowd processing and crowd rating cases compared with that in the crowd solving and crowd creation cases. For another example, in terms of the task presentation affordance, crowd rating cases need the lowest affordance while the crowd creation cases need the highest affordance. Therefore, the authors would like to emphasize that the successful adoption, implementation, and design of the task-oriented crowdsourcing owes to the careful examination of the relationships among the actors, artifacts, and environment of the crowdsourcing projects.

Originality/value

To the authors’ best knowledge, this paper is the first study on conceptualizing the task affordance in online crowdsourcing context. The study contributes to the academic literature on a comprehensive overview of task-related studies in crowdsourcing, which are scattered in several information related fields. Furthermore, this research contributes directly to the area of information science and technology due to a common interest in studying the environments and contexts in which people, information and technology interact and interplay. Practically, this study may yield some implications for the requester and platform operator when designing the relevant tasks or developing the specific crowdsourcing platform.

Details

Online Information Review, vol. 40 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1468-4527

Keywords

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