Nordic Centre for Internet and Society
The Nordic Centre for Internet and Society is a globally-oriented research centre, dedicated to understanding the influence of new internet technologies on working life and society.
Lombana-Bermudez, Andres, Sandra Cortesi, Christian Fieseler, Urs Gasser, Alexa Hasse, Gemma Newlands, and Sarah Wu
Youth and the Digital Economy: Exploring Youth Practices, Motivations, Skills, Pathways, and Value Creation
Young people’s lives are increasingly shaped by digital technologies. While significant digital divides and participation gaps remain, an increasing number of young people around the globe participate in and contribute to the digitally networked environment in many forms, ranging from creative expression on social media to interactive gaming and collaboration. This spotlight explores young people’s digital engagement through the lens of the digital economy and seeks to gain an initial understanding of youth’s practices, motivations, skills, pathways, and modes of value creation as they interact with a digital environment in which the boundaries between the commercial and personal spheres, between work and play, are often blurring. The spotlight summarizes key insights from a trans-Atlantic exploratory research collaboration between Youth and Media at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University and the Nordic Centre for Internet and Society at BI Norwegian Business School. In addition to sketching building blocks toward a framework, the paper brings together three essays that explore in different application contexts both the opportunities and challenges that surface when young people engage with and participate in the digital economy. Please access the report here.
New Article on Algorithmic Surveillance in the Gig Economy Published in Organization Studies
Workplace surveillance is traditionally conceived of as a dyadic process, with an observer and an observee. In this paper, I discuss the implications of an emerging form of work place surveillance: surveillance with an algorithmic, as opposed to human, observer. Situated within the on-demand food-delivery context, I draw upon Henri Lefebvre’s spatial triad to provide in-depth conceptual examination of how platforms rely on conceived space, namely the virtual reality generated by data capture, while neglecting perceived and lived space in the form of the material embodied reality of workers. This paper offers a two-fold contribution. Firstly, it applies Henri Lefebvre’s spatial triad to the techno-centric digital cartography used by platform-mediated organisations, assessing spatial power dynamics and opportunities for resistance. Secondly, this paper advances organisational research into workplace surveillance in situations where the observer and decisionmaker can be a non-human agent. Please access the paper 'Algorithmic surveillance in the gig economy: The organisation of work through Lefebvrian conceived space' here.
Sut I Wong, Christian Fieseler, & Dominique Kost
New Article on Meaningful Digital Work published in the Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology
Our article Digital labourers’ proactivity and the venture for meaningful work: Fruitful or fruitless? was just published in the Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology. In their study, Sut I, Christian and Dominique make the point that contrary to what platform organizations may expect, digital labourers view crowdworking as both a job and a career, which in turn fosters meaningfulness. Based on work with more than 800 digital laborers, the article proposes that careers are important aspect in understanding digital labourers’ understanding of their jobs and careers, and the platforms facilitating digital work could gain in providing career development opportunities, instead of focusing on short‐term incentives. The article is available here
Crystal Abidin, Kjeld Hansen, Mathilde Hogsnes, Gemma Newlands, Mette Lykke Nielsen, Louise Yung Nielsen, Tanja Sihvonen
New Article on the Nordic Influencer Industry Published in the Nordic Journal of Media Studies
This article provides a systematic review of laws, guidelines, and best practices related to the Nordic influencer industry as of the year 2020. We highlight some nuanced differences or shortfalls across Denmark, Finland, Norway, and Sweden, and give some policy recommendations to national governments and industry in order to maintain a professional Nordic standard. The article identifies a degree of social, cultural, and economic coherence in the Nordic context that allows for the Danish, Finnish, Norwegian, and Swedish influencer industries to be viewed as a collaborative entity. It then reviews the status of income and tax procedures, and the regulation of commercial disclosures for influencers in the Nordic region. It is hoped that this research contributes to strengthening the integrity and rigour of the Nordic influencer industry to serve as a model for other regional networks of influencers. Please access the article 'A Review of Formal and Informal Regulations in the Nordic Influencer Industry' here.
Gemma Newlands, Christian Fieseler
New Book Chapter on Social Media Influencer Regulation Published
Influencer marketing is a hybrid phenomenon, merging the advertising logics of traditional celebrity endorsements with social media’s preoccupation with ‘authentic’ and self-generated consumer content. In this chapter we deconstruct the notion of influencer marketing as an achievable career goal. We highlight how the unpaid labour of aspirational influencers can be exploited to fulfil the platform-goals of data capture, as well as to fulfil the personal ambitions of more successful influencers. In addition, we explore how aspiring influencers can face barriers to participation and success, including systemic inequalities of gender, race and class, infrastructural inequalities in terms of access to influencer agencies, and algorithmic inequalities whereby social media is visibility determined by opaque and homogenizing systems. While influencer marketing is increasingly prevalent across all major social media platforms, such as YouTube, TikTok, Weibo and WeChat, this chapter will focus on influencers who predominantly use the photo- and video-sharing platform Instagram. Please access the book chapter '#dreamjob: Navigating Pathways to Success as an Aspiring Instagram Influencer' here.
New Article in the Business Horizons journal
Kateryna Maltseva recently published the article: Wearables in the workplace: The brave new world of employee engagement in Business Horizons. In this article, Kateryna discusses the implications of implementing wearable devices at the workplace. A growing number of organizations increasingly implement wearable devices, hoping to improve organizational performance. Wearables provide new and unique opportunities for engaging employees with their work and their organizational environment. Wearables allow tracking both environment related data (e.g., location, temperature etc.) as well as physiological data (e.g., heart rate, brain waves etc.). The feedback these devices provide is supposed to help both employees and managers navigate the work environment more effectively. Despite the compelling benefits of wearables, they may prove to be detrimental to organizational performance unless a number of ethical issues are addressed. This article provides an overview of the benefits that certain wearable technologies can provide employees and managers, as well as the challenges they may create for organizations.
The article is published in open access and can be found here.
Eliane Bucher, Christian Fieseler, Christoph Lutz, and Gemma Newlands
Publication Alert: New Chapter in Research in the Sociology of Organizations
We’re excited to contribute a chapter to the new issue of Research in the Sociology of Organizations (RSO). In our chapter titled “Shaping Emotional Labor Practices in the Sharing Economy”, we are investigating how digital platforms of the sharing economy encourage and enforce emotional labor practices among both consumers (passengers, guest etc.) and providers (drivers, hosts etc.). Here, we follow a mixed methods approach, combining survey research among Airbnb and Uber users with content analysis of seven leading sharing economy platforms.
Our findings show that (1) users perform emotional labor despite not seeing is as necessarily desirable and (2) platforms actively encourage the performance of emotional labor practices even in the absence of direct formal control. Emotional labor practices are encouraged through (hard) design features such as mutual ratings, reward systems, and gamification, as well as through more subtle (soft) normative framing of desirable practices via platform and app guidelines, tips, community sites, or blogs.
Dominique Kost, Christian Fieseler, and Sut I Wong
New Article on Boundaryless Careers in the Gig Economy published in the Human Re-source Management Journal
We have recently published a new conceptual article on careers in the gig economy, in the Human Resource Management Journal. In the article, we we debate the obstructions to and potential ways to promote boundaryless careers in the gig economy, which—despite appearing on the surface to offer suitable conditions for boundaryless careers—suffers from numerous conditions that hinder such careers. In particular, we then conjecture that intraorganisational and interorganisational career boundaries restrict gig workers' development of relevant career competencies and thus limit their mobility. We then put forward the notion that we have to consider moving awayfrom traditional, employer-centric human resource management and introduce new forms of network-based and self-organised human resource management practices (in the form of collaborative communities of practice) in order to diminish these boundaries.
The article is available here: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/1748-8583.12265
Lyn Hoang, Grant Blank, Anabel Quan-Haase
The Winners and the Losers of the Platform Economy: Who Participates?
Nordic Centre collaborators Anabel Quan-Haase, Lyn Hoang (both University of Western Ontario) and Grant Blank (University of Oxford) have just published a new article in the prestigious journal Information, Communication & Society. In "The Winners and the Losers of the Platform Economy: Who Participates?" Lyn, Grant and Anabel investigate the predictors of participation in the platform economy. Using rich and representative survey data from the United States, they show that participants in different sectors of the platform reveal vastly different social profiles. In particular, those who work through labor-exchange platforms tend to come from disadvantaged backgrounds, while participants of online selling platforms tend to be from affluent backgrounds. The findings indicate the need to study the platform economy in a (more) fine-grained manner. Anabel and Grant are involved as international collaborators in the Toppforsk project "Future Ways of Working in the Digital Economy". Their research interests are in the sociological study of the Internet, particularly from a digital inequalities and privacy perspective.
Gemma Newlands, Christoph Lutz
Crowdwork and the Mobile Underclass: Barriers to Participation in India and the United States - New Article in New Media & Society
Gemma and Christoph published a new paper in New Media & Society (2018 impact factor of 4.800). Their article "Crowdwork and the mobile underclass: Barriers to participation in India and the United States" came out in late January 2020. It uses rich survey data from more than 600 Amazon Mechanical Turk workers in India and the United States to investigate if and how these workers use mobile devices (smartphones, tablets) for their tasks and task-related activities. As a theoretical basis, Gemma and Christoph rely on the mobile underclass argument, which describes how mobile Internet access is second-class Internet access due to limitations in functionality, content availability and openness of protocols. The results paint a differentiated picture but offer support for the mobile underclass argument. While many workers report using mobile devices on Amazon Mechanical Turk, this use is complementary and seen as limiting. Substantial barriers to mobile crowdwork exist in in terms of functionality, accessibility, and affordability (especially in India). In the United States, the frequency of mobile phone use for crowdwork has a negative effect on hourly earnings, indicating that workers are effectively penalized for using mobile devices. The study calls for more awareness among Amazon Mechanical Turk requesters (including researchers) to make their tasks mobile-friendly, enabling participation among mobile-first and mobile-only Internet users. The study is part of the ongoing Toppforsk project "Future Ways of Working in the Digital Economy" and is situated within work package 4 on inequalities in new forms of work.
Moritz Büchi, Eduard Fosch-Villaronga, Christoph Lutz, Aurelia Tamò-Larrieux, Shruthi Velidi, Salome Viljoen
The chilling effects of algorithmic profiling: Mapping the issues - New Article in Computer Law & Security Review
The article "The chilling effects of algorithmic profiling: Mapping the issues" was recently published in Computer Law & Security Review (highest ranked journal in the technology law category according to Google Scholar, with a 2018 impact factor of 1.552). In the paper, Christoph Lutz and his co-authors Moritz Büchi, Aurelia Tamò-Larrieux (both University of Zurich), Shruthi Velidi (former Fulbright visiting researcher at the Nordic Centre), Eduard Fosch-Villaronga (Leiden University), and Salome Viljoen (NYU and Cornell Tech) conduct a thorough literature review of the topics of algorithmic corporate profiling and chilling effects. Chilling effects are understood as the impact of surveillance on constraining behavior. Existing resesarch indicates that algorithmic profiling is becoming increasingly pervasive and that government and peer surveillance can in fact "chill" or constrain individuals. However, little is none about the chilling effects of corporate profiling, with a scattered regulatory landscape in the US and in Europe. The authors offer four propositions for future research to address the topic. The article is available here.
Eduard Fosch-Villaronga, Christoph Lutz, Aurelia Tamò-Larrieux
Gathering Expert Opinions for Social Robots’ Ethical, Legal, and Societal Concerns: Findings from Four International Workshops - New Article in the International Journal of Social Robotics
In late November 2019, Christoph, together with Eduard Fosch-Villaronga (Leiden University) and Aurelia Tamò-Larrieux (University of Zurich) published the paper "Gathering Expert Opinions for Social Robots’ Ethical, Legal, and Societal Concerns: Findings from Four International Workshops". The article is the result of four workshops conducted by the authors between 2015 and 2017 at leading robotics conferences. In these workshops, the authors convened scholars and practitioners in the field of social robotics to discuss the ethical, legal and social (ELS) challenges of this emerging technology in a solution-oriented format. The article synthesizes the findings of the workshops and discusses five key challenges: 1) privacy and security 2) legal uncertainty 3) autonomy and agency 4) employment effects 5) replacement of human interactions. The paper is available open access in the International Journal of Social Robotics - a key resource in the field of robotics (2018 impact factor of 2.296).
Christian Pieter Hoffmann, Christoph Lutz
Digital Divides in Political Participation: The Mediating Role of Social Media Self‐Efficacy and Privacy Concerns - New Article in Policy & Internet
Christoph Lutz and Christian Pieter Hoffmann (University of Leipzig) published a new article in the prestigious journal Policy & Internet (impact factor of 1.927 in 2018). In "Digital Divides in Political Participation: The Mediating Role of Social Media Self‐Efficacy and Privacy Concerns", the authors look at the social inequalities in online and offline political participation in Germany. Based on a survey of 1488 Internet users in Germany and using social cognitive theory, they find salient antecedents in the form of social media self-efficacy, age, gender and education. The results show how political participation in Germany - both online and offline - is strongly socially stratified and how cognitive dispositions are important to explain it. The article is available here.
Christoph Lutz, Maren Schöttler, Christian Pieter Hoffmann
The Privacy Implications of Social Robots: Scoping Review and Expert Interviews - New Article in Mobile Media & Communication
The article "The privacy implications of social robots: Scoping review and expert interviews" was recently published in Mobile Media & Communication. The paper by Christoph Lutz, Maren Schöttler (Free University of Berlin) and Christian Pieter Hoffmann (University of Leipzig) systematically assesses the privacy implications of social robots, based on a scoping review and expert interviews. In the scoping review, the authors analyze 33 relevant publications across fields. In the expert interviews, salient aspects from the literature review are discussed in more depth through the voices of four academic experts, one practitioner, and one policy expert. Together, the analyses show that social robots introduce new privay challenges due to their autonomy and mobility. The article is available here and is part of a Mobile Media & Communication special issue on the topic of "mobile media beyond the mobile phone".
Heike Felzmann, Eduard Fosch Villaronga, Christoph Lutz, Aurelia Tamò-Larrieux
Transparency You Can Trust: Transparency Requirements for Artificial Intelligence between Legal Norms and Contextual Concerns - New Article in Big Data & Society
Christoph Lutz, together with co-authors Heike Felzmann (NUI Galway), Eduard Fosch Villaronga (University of Leiden) and Aurelia Tamo-Larrieux (University of Zurich), published a new article in the open access journal Big Data & Society. Their conceptual article "Transparency you can trust: Transparency requirements for artificial intelligence between legal norms and contextual concerns" investigates the phenomenon of transparency in artificial intelligence (AI) and automated decision-making from a legal, sociological and ethical perspective. The article is a continuation of earlier work on this issue and extends the analyses from robotics to AI more generally. The full article is freely available here. Since its publication at the end of June 2019, the paper has been downloaded over 1000 times and has been heavily tweeted, reaching up to 200000 followers.
Michael Etter, Christian Fieseler, and Glen Whelan
Special Issue “Sharing Economy, Sharing Responsibility? Corporate Social Responsibility in the Digital Age” now out in the Journal of Business Ethics
Our new special issue in the Journal of Business Ethics, together with Michael Etter from King’s College London and Glen Whelan from York University, was just published. The special issue presents five articles that develop theoretical frameworks and conduct empirical investigations, providing fine-grained analyses of urgent issues in the sharing economy. Together, the articles employ theories rooted in business ethics to investigate the sharing economy and use their investigations of the sharing economy to further develop business ethics theories. The special issue and introductory essay are available here:
Alexander Buhmann, Johannes Passmann, and Christian Fieseler
New article in the Journal of Business Ethics: Managing Algorithmic Accountability: Balancing Reputational Concerns, Engagement Strategies, and the Potential of Rational Discourse
In this article, we develop a framework for managing algorithmic accountability that highlights three interrelated dimensions: reputational concerns, engagement strategies, and discourse principles. The framework clarifies (a) that accountability processes for algorithms are driven by reputational concerns about the epistemic setup, opacity, and outcomes of algorithms; (b) that the way in which organizations practically engage with emergent expectations about algorithms may be manipulative, adaptive, or moral; and (c) that when accountability relation-ships are heavily burdened by the opacity and fluidity of complex algorithmic systems, the emphasis of engagement should shift to a rational communication process through which a continuous and tentative assessment of the development, workings, and consequences of algorithms can be achieved over time. The article is now out in the Journal of Business Ethics and is available here:
Digital Inequalities in the Age of Artificial Intelligence and Big Data - New Article in Human Behavior and Emerging Technologies
Christoph Lutz' article Digital Inequalities in the Age of Artificial Intelligence and Big Data has been published in the new journal Human Behavior and Emerging Technologies. In this comprehensive literature review, Christoph summarizes previous research on digital inequalities and then shows avenues how this literature might engage with emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence, big data and the gig economy. The article is a call for exploring technologies such as smart speakers, online labor platforms and social media through the sociological lens of inequalities, showing how different population groups adopt, use and benefit in different ways from such emerging technologies. The article can be found here and is freely accessible.
Heike Felzmann, Eduard Fosch-Villaronga, Christoph Lutz, Aurelia Tamo-Larrieux
Robots and Transparency: The Multiple Dimensions of Transparency in the Context of Robot Technologies - New Article in IEEE Robotics & Automation Magazine
Christoph Lutz, together with co-authors Heike Felzmann (NUI Galway), Eduard Fosch-Villaronga (University of Leiden) and Aurelia Tamo-Larrieux (University of Zurich), managed to publish the article Robots and Transparency: The Multiple Dimensions of Transparency in the Context of Robot Technologies in the prestigious IEEE Robotics & Automation Magazine (2018 Impact Factor of 4.250). In the article, the authors look at the transparency requirements of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and problematize its application in the context of social and assistive robots. The article can be found here.
Gemma Newlands, Christoph Lutz, Christian Fieseler
Trading on the Unknown: Scenarios for the Future Value of Data - New Article in Law & Ethics of Human Rights
Gemma Newlands, Christoph Lutz and Christian Fieseler saw their new article Trading on the Unknown: Scenarios for the Future Value of Data published in the May issue of Law & Ethics of Human Rights. The journal is one of the key outlets in human rights law, ranking number 3 (out of 44) in the W&L Law Journal Ranking. The paper is part of the special issue "Sharing Economy Markets and Human Rights" and reflects on the ways in which sharing economy platforms, such as Airbnb and Uber, place bets on the future through excessive data collection. It proposes four scencarios of data's future value and discusses how realistic each scenario is. The article can be found here.
Gemma Newlands, Christoph Lutz, and Christian Fieseler
The Conditioning Function of Rating Mechanisms for Consumers in the Sharing Economy - New Article in Internet Research
The article The Conditioning Function of Rating Mechanisms for Consumers in the Sharing Economy by Gemma Newlands, Christoph Lutz and Christian Fieseler was published in the prestigious journal Internet Research (2018 Impact Factor of 4.109). The paper is a continuation of their 2018 HICSS paper Emotional Labor in the Sharing Economy and forms part of a special issue on the sharing economy. Gemma, Christoph and Christian show through a mixed-methods design how sharing economy consumers (e.g., Airbnb guests, Uber passengers) perform emotional labor, for example by hiding negative feelings. Such emotional labor is perceived as burdensome but necessary due to the bilateral rating mechanisms that major sharing platforms have in place. The article can be found here.
Hannah Trittin, Christian Fieseler, and Kateryna Maltseva
The Serious and the Mundane: Reflections on Gamified CSR Communication
In our new article in the Journal of Management Inquiry, we together with our colleague Hannah Trittin from the Leuphana University, debate the strategic application of game elements to corporate messaging regarding societal and ecological concerns. We propose that gamified corporate social responsibility (CSR) communication is potentially well suited to create attention and involvement for corporate CSR initiatives. However, we argue that many gamification applications undermine their purpose and increase stakeholder suspicions about CSR. By debating the potential benefits and risks of gamified CSR communication, we aim to open the scholarly debate on the appropriateness of gamification in CSR. The article is available here:
Eliane Bucher, Christian Fieseler, and Christoph Lutz
Mattering in Digital Labor – New Article published in Journal of Managerial Psychology
Our newest piece on Mattering in Digital Labor was published this week in the Journal of Managerial Psychology. In this publication, Eliane, Christian and Christoph develop a measure of mattering in crowdworking with four dimensions: reliance, social recognition, importance and interaction. They show that reliance is the most pronounced dimension, followed by interaction, importance and social recognition. The findings indicate that individuals who feel that they themselves and their work “count” and “make a difference” will be more engaged in their digital labor. By clarifying the dimensionality of mattering in crowdwork and studying its differentiated effect on WE, the paper makes a contribution to research on crowdwork and the future of work. Beyond the theoretical contributions, the finding that perceived importance fosters WE has important implications for task and platform design.
Kateryna Maltseva, Christian Fieseler, and Hannah Trittin-Ulbrich
New article on the effects of gamification in corporate communications: An international journal
Kateryna Maltseva, Christian Fieseler, and Hannah Trittin-Ulbrich have recently published an article named “The challenges of gamifying CSR communication” in the Corporate Communications: An International Journal. Gamification – the use of game elements in non-game context – is a tool that practitioners commonly use to craft persuasive messages to win the attention of their stakeholders. Gamification is seen as engaging and involving tool that has a potential to draw attention and sustain attention. In three online experiments, the authors demonstrate that the optimism around gamification effectiveness might be premature as there are boundary conditions to the effects of gamification on environmental attitude, intention and behavior.
Article link: https://www.emeraldinsight.com/doi/abs/10.1108/CCIJ-09-2018-0092
Gemma Newlands, Christoph Lutz, and Christian Hoffmann
Sharing-by-proxy: Invisible users in the Sharing Economy - New Article in First Monday
With the future of work increasingly data-driven, platforms automate decisions based on the collection of vast quantities of user data. However, non-users constitute a challenge as they provide little to no data for either platforms or other users. We focus on a category of (non-)users that has not received any attention in research: users-by-proxy. Users-by-proxy make use of sharing services but they are not themselves part of the sharing transaction. Platforms cannot analyze their behavior to tailor services or allocate labor most effectively. Users-by-proxy also have significant implications for trust and reputation mechanisms. In this conceptual contribution, we provide a definition of users-by-proxy as a third category between users and non-users, developing a typology of users-by-proxy based on motives of non-/use. We focus on the ramifications of users-by-proxy for the future of work and their significance for the limits of data-driven decision-making. The paper can be accessed online here
Gemma Newlands, Christoph Lutz and Christian Fieseler
Collective Action and Provider Classification in the Sharing Economy - Our New Article in New Technology, Work and Employment
The article Collective Action and Provider Classification in the Sharing Economy by Gemma Newlands, Christoph Lutz and Christian Fieseler was published in the prestigious journal New Technology, Work and Employment. Using data from 386 sharing economy providers (e.g., Airbnb hosts, Uber drivers) across 12 European countries, the authors investigate soft forms of provider self-organization and attitudes towards collective action. They also look at provider self-classification: the question whether sharing economy providers see themselves as independent contractors or as employees of sharing platforms. The findings point to varied opinions and practices, with five overarching clusters that range from collective action enthusiasts to collective active opponents. Sharing modalities such as motivations, sharing frequency and the main platform where providers offer access to their goods differentiate these clusters. For example, Uber drivers are more positive towards collective action and also have a stronger preference to be classified as employees compared with Airbnb hosts and BlaBlaCar drivers. The article can be found here.
Christoph Lutz and Gemma Newlands
Consumer Segmentation within the Sharing Economy - Our New Article in the Journal of Business Research
In our new article 'Consumer segmentation within the sharing economy: The case of Airbnb', published in the Journal of Business Research, we find that the users of Airbnb services are distinguished by their use-type (selecting shared rooms vs entire homes) and that income, education, gender, and travel modality predict accomodation choices. Utilizing a mixed methods approach, with both a quantitative survey and a qualitative content analysis of Airbnb listings, we compare two different types of accommodation offered on Airbnb: shared room and entire home.
Our key findings in this paper highlight how Airbnb hosts strongly target their listings for consumer segments, but that guest choice and host targeting do not align, leading to potential innefficiency in the market.
The paper can be found here
Eliane Bucher, Christian Fieseler, Matthes Fleck, and Christoph Lutz
Authenticity and the Sharing Economy – Our New Article in Academy of Management Discoveries
In our new article in Academy of Management Discoveries, we were interested in the notion of authenticity in the sharing economy. The sharing economy is witnessing an interesting balance, where on the one side, platforms and providers like to brand authentic experiences, and clients claim to actively seek such experiences. However, at the same time, the sharing economy is increasingly becoming professionalized, witnessing an outgrowth of third-party service provider and less acceptance for service failures.
Against this background, based on a qualitative interview-study as well as on a quantitative survey among users of the room sharing platform Airbnb, we show how the degree of perceived authenticity may impact review behavior and customer loyalty. Our results point to the integral nature of both authenticity and the invocation of notions of authenticity for sharing business models who are reliant, by their very nature, on alleviating the imperfections of amateur production.
REFERENCE: Bucher, E., Fieseler, C., Fleck, M., & Lutz, C. (2017). Authenticity and the sharing economy. Academy of Management Discoveries. https://doi.org/10.5465/amd.2016.0161
Dominique Kost, Christian Fieseler, and Sut I Wong
Finding Meaning in Crowdwork – Our New Article in Computers in Human Behavior
Our new article in Computers in Human Behavior focuses on how crowdworkers construct meaningfulness, based on the accounts of workers on the crowdsourcing platform Amazon Mechanical Turk. We draw upon a relational job design perspective to explore why microworkers experience meaningfulness in their work. We found four sources of meaningfulness: rewards, self-improvement, moral, and social. These four sources vary in the degree to which they were internal or external in focus, and in their level of rationalization (concrete or abstract). This may explain why such types of employment are appealing despite a lack of organizational-support structures and points to the need to better understand cue provision in virtual, platform-enabled work settings.
REFERENCE: Kost, D., Fieseler, C., & Wong, S. (2018). Finding meaning in a hopeless place? The construction of meaningfulness in digital microwork. Computers in Human Behavior, 82, 101-110.
Christoph Lutz and Christian Hoffmann
Paper on ResearchGate and Altmetrics published in Social Science Computer Review
The article Making Academic Social Capital Visible: Relating SNS-Based, Alternative and Traditional Metrics of Scientific Impact by Christoph Lutz and Christian Pieter Hoffmann (University of Leipzig) was published in the prestigious journal Social Science Computer Review (2017 Impact Factor of 2.293). Based on a social network analysis of follower-following relationships on ResearchGate and extensive bibliometric data about 300 scholars at a Swiss university, the authors investigate how different metrics of scientifc impact relate to each other. The findings indicate that metrics derived from specific-purpose social media and social networking services such as Mendeley correlate strongly with established citation metrics such as researchers' Google Scholar and Web of Science h-index. Metrics derived from general-purpose social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter, on the other hand, have only weak correlations with established citation metrics. Finally, centrality in the ResearchGate network has moderate correlations with most other indicators assessed, showing future potential of social network analysis-based metrics of impact assessment. Such centrality measures might indeed capture academic social capital. The article can be found here.
Christoph Lutz and Grant Blank
Paper on the Representativeness of Social Media Platforms published in American Behavioral Scientist
Christoph, together with Grant Blank from the Oxford Internet Institute (University of Oxford), published a new article, entitled "Representativeness of Social Media in Great Britain: Investigating Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, and Instagram", in the prestigious journal American Behavioral Scientist. The authors investigate how different social media platforms differ in their user base in terms of demographic, socio-economic, and attitudinal characteristics. Using rich and high quality data from the Oxford Internet Survey, they find pronounced age and socio-economic differences. Facebook, for example, is used more heavily among young individuals and women as well as users with access to mobile devices and high levels of self-efficacy. The findings have implications for social media research, as no platform is representative of the broader population. The paper can be found here.
Christian Fieseler, Eliane Bucher and Christian Hoffmann
Paper on Fairness and Crowdworking published in the Journal of Business Ethics
Christian, Eliane and Christian Hoffmann (University of Leipzig) just published a new article named "Unfairness by Design? The Perceived Fairness of Digital Labor on Crowdworking Platforms" in the Journal of Business Ethics. In the article, we analyze institutional biases embedded in on-demand crowdworking platforms and their effect on perceived workplace fairness. We find a triadic relationship between employers, workers, and platform providers, where platform providers have the power to design settings and processes that affect workers’ fairness perceptions. The article can be found here.
Christian Fieseler, Severina Müller, Miriam Meckel & Anne Suphan
Paper about Coping with Unemployment published in Social Science Computer Review
Christian, together with Severina Müller (University of St. Gallen), Miriam Meckel (Wirtschaftswoche) and Anne Suphan (University of Hohenheim) just had a new article published in Social Science Computer Review. The article named "Time Well Wasted? Online Procrastination during Times of Unemployment" examines the argument regarding whether perceived social exclusion during unemployment leads to procrastination through online media, which in turn lessens the job search efforts of the unemployed. Based on data from unemployed Internet users, we argue that online procrastination plays an important role in the lives of the unemployed but has no immediate effects on their perceived job search efforts, but contextual factors such as motivational control play an important role. The article can be found here
Christoph Lutz, Christian Hoffmann, Eliane Bucher and Christian Fieseler
Paper about Privacy published in Information, Communication & Society
Christoph, Eliane and Christian, together with Christian Hoffmann (University of Leipzig), published a new article, entitled "The role of privacy concerns in the sharing economy", in the prestigious journal Information, Communication & Society. In this paper, the authors investigate how privacy concerns about Airbnb - both online and offline during the stay - affect users' sharing behavior. In addition, they look at the role of trust and the perceived benefits of sharing through Airbnb. Based on the analysis of survey data from 374 Airbnb hosts, the authors find that privacy concerns have no significant effect on sharing behavior but trust and the perception of monetary benefits influence sharing positively. This leads to the notion of a sharing paradox, in line with previous research finding divergence between privacy attitudes and behavior. The paper can be found here.
Christoph Lutz, Christian Hoffmann and Miriam Meckel
Paper about Serendipity published in JASIST
The article Online serendipity: A contextual differentiation of antecedents and outcomes by Christoph Lutz, Christian Pieter Hoffmann (University of Leipzig), and Miriam Meckel (Wirtschaftswoche) was published in the prestigious Journal of the Association for Information Science and Technology (JASIST). Based on a large survey in Germany with over 1000 respondents, the authors investigate the phenomenon of serendipity on the Internet. Serendipity describes unexpected experiences prompted by a valuable interaction with ideas or information. In colloquial terms, serendipity means stumbling upon something useful or finding something valuable without looking for it. The study demonstrates how trust, self-efficacy and the disclosure of personal information on the Internet foster serendipity experiences. It also sheds light on the context by distinguishing between online shopping, social media, and information environments such as search. Only in the social media context serendipity leads to higher sastisfaction with the service, but not in the online shopping and information scenario.
Christoph Lutz and Giulia Ranzini
Paper about Privacy on Tinder published in Social Media + Society
The article "Where Dating Meets Data: Investigating Social and Institutional Privacy Concerns on Tinder" by Christoph Lutz and Giulia Ranzini (VU Amsterdam) was published in the open access journal "Social Media + Society". It is freely available under the following link. In this study, the authors investigate the mobile dating app Tinder. Using an online survey of almost 500 users, they find that most users' privacy concerns about instiutional threats (such as data collection by Tinder and selling data to third parties) are more pronounced than their concerns about social privacy threats (for example, stalking by other users and hacking). The analysis also reveals the role of motives and psychological factors in predicting both types of privacy concerns.
Sut I Wong
New Publication on Subordinate Empowerment in the Internatiaonal Journal of Human Resource Management
Sut I recently published a study at International Journal of Human Resource Management, entitled “Influencing upward: Subordinates’ responses to leaders’ (un)awareness of their empowerment expectations”. In this study, Sut I investigated how subordinates engage in upward influence behaviors to voice their opinions on empowerment practices to their leaders. Data were collected from 114 pairs of leader-subordinate dyads at a manufacturing firm. Based on cross-level polynomial regression and response surface analyses, the present study found that the less the leaders were aware of subordinates’ empowerment expectations, the more the subordinates engaged in upward influence behaviors, namely rational persuasion and inspirational appeals. Moreover, high leader-subordinate task interdependence and subordinate self-efficacy as moderators amplified the (in)congruent relationships. The results contribute to empowerment literature by providing valuable insight into the bottom-up influence in the empowerment process.
Christoph Lutz and Christian Hoffmann
Paper on Online Participation published in Information, Communication, & Society
Christoph Lutz recently published a new article, entitled "The Dark Side of Online Participation", in the prestigious journal “Information, Communication & Society”. The paper introduces a new typology of online participation and is co-authored with Christian Pieter Hoffmann from the University of Leipzig. Through focus groups with almost 100 Internet users in Germany, Christoph and Christian derived a typology of online participation with eight forms along three axes. The forms address a range of biases in the literature such as a positivity bias, a political bias and an agency bias. The paper can be found here.
Sut I Wong
Upcoming Conference Paper on Leadership Identity Inventory
Together with 26 international scholars, Sut I has a paper on leadership identity inventory (ILI) to be presented at European Association of Social Psychology in Granada in July 2017. The social identity approach to leadership has had increasing impact in recent years. Many studies have shown, for instance, that more prototypical leaders are more effective - for example, they are typically trusted more, secure more follower support and have greater leeway to make decisions. More recently, in addition to identity prototypicality (or “being one of us“), three further dimensions of identity leadership have been identified (Haslam, Reicher & Platow, 2011): identity advancement (“doing it for us“), identity entrepreneurship (“crafting a sense of us“) and identity impressarioship (“making us matter“). All four dimensions have recently been operationalized with the Identity Leadership Inventory (ILI; Steffens et al., 2014). This presentation introduces and presents first results of an ongoing international project, the ILI-Global, which applies and validates the ILI scales by gathering data from all six continents and more than 20 countries with over 3800 participants. The ILI has been translated (using back-translation methods) and used in online surveys along with other measures of leadership (LMX, transformational and authentic leadership) and employee attitudes and (self-reported) behaviors (e.g., satisfaction, identification, citizenship behaviors) in 15 different languages. The results of ILI-Global confirm the validity of the ILI across cultures. We show that the four dimensions of the ILI are distinguishable and that they contribute to the prediction of work-related attitudes and behaviors above and beyond other influential leadership constructs.
Elizabeth Solberg and Sut I Wong
New Paper on Job-Crafting published in The Leadership Quarterly
In a study published at The Leadership Quarterly, entitled 'Crafting One’s Job to Take Charge of Role Overload: When Proactivity Requires Adaptivity Across Levels', Elizabeth Solberg and Professor Wong investigate employees’ job crafting behavior in the context of perceived role overload. They identify employees’ perceived ability to deal with work change (i.e., “perceived adaptivity”) and leaders’ need for structure as moderators positively influencing this relationship. A two-wave panel field study of 47 leaders and 143 employees in a Norwegian manufacturing firm found that perceived role overload related negatively to employees’ job crafting, as hypothesized. Employees’ perceived adaptivity alone did not increase job crafting in role overload situations, as predicted. Rather, the relationship between perceived role overload and job crafting was only positive when employees’ perceived adaptivity was high and their leaders’ need for structure was low. Thus, employees’ job crafting in role overload situations depends on the interactive fit between employees’ and leaders’ adaptive capabilities providing important implications for the socially embedded theory of job crafting.
Christian Hoffmann, Christoph Lutz, and Giulia Ranzini
Paper on Online Privacy published in Cyberpsychology
The paper “Privacy cynicism: A new approach to the privacy paradox” came out in the open access journal “Cyberpsychology” and is freely available. The paper can be found here. In this piece, Christoph and his co-authors, Christian Hoffmann (University of Leipzig) and Giulia Ranzini (VU Amsterdam), investigate privacy attitudes in Germany with focus group data. They find that many Internet users are cynical when it comes to their online privacy, expressing feelings of distrust, uncertainty, powerlessness, and resignation.
Christoph Lutz, Pepe Strathoff, Aurelia Tamò, and Flavius Kehr
Paper on Online Privacy published in ex ante
The paper “Privacy through Multiple Lenses: Applying the St. Galler Privacy Interaction Framework (SG-PIF)”, co-authored with Aurelia Tamò, Pepe Strathoff and Flavius Kehr and published in ex ante, describes a multi-level perspective on online privacy, based on ecological systems theory. Online privacy is conceptualized on four different levels and their interactions: the personal level, organizations, society, and the government. The authors apply this framework – the SG-PIF – to email tracking and thus show its usefulness.
Christoph Lutz and Grant Blank
Paper on Internet Use published in New Media & Society
The article "Benefits and harms from Internet use: A differentiated analysis of Great Britan" by Christoph Lutz and Grant Blank (Oxford Internet Institute, University of Oxford) was published in New Media & Society. The piece looks at the positive and negative outcomes from using the Internet among different population segments in Great Britain. Drawing on rich survey data from more than 1000 individuals, the authors show that highly educated and elderly Internet users profit more from their Internet use than less educated and younger users. However, educated users are also most at risk to be harmed, for example by having their credit card information stolen or being misrepresented online. The paper can be found here.
Christoph Lutz and Giulia Ranzini
Paper on Mobile Dating published in Mobile Media & Communication
The article "Love at first swipe? Explaining Tinder self-presentation and motives" by Christoph Lutz and Giulia Ranzini (VU Amsterdam) was published in Mobile Media & Communication. In their article, the authors investigate the mobile dating app Tinder. Using an online survey of 500 users, they find that most users present themselves authentically but a substantial number reveals deceptive selves. Moreover, the motivations for using Tinder differ between men and women and are influenced by psychological characteristics such as self-esteem and narcissism. The article is now available online on the journal site.
Sut I Wong, Miha Škerlavaj, and Matej Černe
New Paper on Job-Crafting in Human Resource Management
Professor Wong together with Professor Skerlavaj and Assistant Professor Cerne published a study on job crating in Human Resource Management. The paper is entitled, 'Build Coalitions to Fit: Autonomy Expectations, Competence Mobilization, and Job Crafting'. Job crafting offers several beneficial organizational outcomes, yet little is known about what makes employees engage in it. In particular, the role of leaders in influencing their subordinates to engage in job crafting has been insufficiently studied. Drawing on role theory, we suggest that the congruence of leader–subordinate autonomy expectations nurtures subordinates’ experiences of having their competences adequately utilized in their jobs. This experience, which involves the competence mobilization of their work roles, subsequently fosters subordinates’ engagement in job crafting behavior. A two-stage field study of 145 leader–subordinate dyads using cross-level polynomial regression and response surface analysis supported the (in)congruence hypotheses. The results also demonstrated that subordinates’ perceived competence mobilization mediates the relationship between autonomy expectation (in)congruence and job crafting. In addition, leader coalition as a moderator strengthens the effect of perceived competence mobilization as a psychological condition for job crafting.
Christian Fieseler and Eliane Bucher
Paper on Digital Labor published in New Media and Society
In their article “The flow of digital labor”, recently published in New Media and Society, Christian Fieseler and Eliane Bucher discuss flow experiences as a driver for engaging in digital microwork, while also looking at factors which may lead to improved digital work experiences in general. Even with the rise of the robots, there are (still) a multitude of tasks which cannot be completed by computers. Digital microwork platforms such as Amazon Mechanical Turk or Taskrabbit specialize in such human micro-tasks like tagging images, transcribing snippets of text or correctly categorizing the sentiment expressed in a tweet. They broker micro work-packages to an anonymous digital workforce for micro-compensations. Microworkers typically work in their leisure time and they often work for a relatively small overall hourly wage. Based on a survey of 701 workers on amazon mechanical turk, the authors show that intrinsic motivation, complete absorption into the task-stream at hand as well as enjoyment of working on tasks which are sometimes challenging, yet not impossible to solve, contribute to flow-like states of immersion during digital microwork. Furthermore, the authors show that reaching flow while in digital microwork depends on certain work characteristics, such the perceived degree of worker autonomy, the extent to which a worker’s skills are utilized or challenged, and the significance of feedback received for a job well done. The results both highlight the importance of flow-like immersion in explaining why individuals engage in digital labor projects and point to avenues that may lead to the design of optimal digital work experiences.
Eliane Bucher, Christian Fieseler and Christoph Lutz
Paper on the Sharing Economy published in Computers in Human Behavior
Article on the Sharing Economy published in Computers in Human Behavior.
The article "What's mine is yours (for a nominal fee) – Exploring the spectrum of utilitarian to altruistic motives for Internet-mediated sharing" by Eliane Bucher, Christian Fieseler and Christoph Lutz has been accepted in Computers in Human Behavior and is now available online. In their article, the authors discuss that social-hedonic motives are the strongest predictor of Internet-mediated sharing, such as on platforms as Airbnb, and that monetary incentives may be necessary but not sufficient for online sharing. The paper can be accessed here.
Sut I Wong and Anders Dysvik
New Paper on Mastery Avoidance in International Journal of Human Resource Management
Professor Wong together with Professor Dysvik published a study at International Journal of Human Resource Management on how individuals with various organizational tenure may engage in mastery-avoidance goals. The paper is titled, 'Organizational tenure and mastery-avoidance goals: The moderating role of psychological empowerment'. Mastery-avoidance (MAv) goals are recognized to be detrimental as they arouse counterproductive work-related behaviours. In the current literature, MAv goals are assumed to be more predominant among newcomers and longer tenured employees. The alleged relationship provides important implications but yet has received scant empirical attention. In response, this study examines the proposed U-shaped curvilinear relationship between organizational tenure and MAv goal orientation. In addition, the potential moderating role of psychological empowerment on this curvilinear relationship is investigated. Based on data from 655 certified accountants, the results support the existence of the hypothesized curvilinear relationship. Also, it revealed that for employees who experience higher levels of psychological empowerment, the U-shaped relationship between organizational tenure and MAv goal orientation becomes flattened.
Steffen Giessner, Kate Horton, and Sut I Wong
New Paper on Organizational Mergers published in Social Issues and Policy Review
Steffen Giessner, Kate E. Horton and Sut I Wong published a review article at Social Issue and Policy Review on identity management during organizational mergers & acquisitions (M&As). The paper is titled, 'Identity management during organizational mergers: Empirical insights and policy advices'. Mergers and acquisitions (M&As) are increasingly undertaken in both the private and public sector, for sustaining competitiveness within challenging economic climates, such as Facebook acquired instragram, Amazon is currently planning to acquire FedEx and UPS. Yet, empirical evidence indicates that the majority of M&A activities can be considered as financial failures. In addition, many has pointed to the human and social costs of M&As to be a major contributor. They have conducted a review of the M&A literature and suggested four key areas to consider for M&A adjustment, including identity process, intergroup structure and processes, justice and fairness, and leadership.
Four papers accepted for the AOM 2016 conference
We are happy to present four papers at this year's Academy of Management conference at Los Angeles: // Hoffmann, C., Lutz, C., & Meckel, C. (2016). Academic Social Capital? Relating Centrality on Research-Gate to Established Impact Measures. Paper to be presented at the 2016 AOM Annual Meeting, Anaheim, 5-9 August. // Kost, D., Wong, S. I, & Fieseler, C. (2016). Finding meaning in a hopeless place: The construction of meaning in digital microwork. Paper Accepted for presentation at Annual Meeting of Academy of Management, Anaheim, California, USA, August 2016. // Wu, J., Giessner, S. R., & Wong, S. I. (2016). When will followers voice up? Interplay between leader-member exchange (dis)similarity and leader group prototypicality. Paper accepted for presentation at Annual Meeting of Academy of Management, Anaheim, California, USA, August 2016. // Kost, D. (2016). Transactive Memory systems in virtual teams: The effect of integration and differentiation on performance. Paper accepted for presentation at Annual Meeting of Academy of Management, Anaheim, California, USA, August 2016. More information about the AOM conference is available here: http://aom.org/annualmeeting/theme/
Paper on Participation Divides published in Social Media + Society
A new paper by Christoph Lutz, entitled “A Social Milieu Approach to the Online Participation Divides in Germany,” has been published in the open access journal Social Media + Society. The article is freely available online on the journal homepage under the following link. It deals with online participation in Germany: active uses of the Internet, where users create and share their own content, for example via blogs, video platforms or on social media. By analyzing focus groups and online communities, this qualitative study identifies different online participation patterns in seven social milieus. Age and proactive attitudes partly account for the milieu differences, with the role of socio-economic status being more complex than assumed in previous research.
Five Papers accepted at the ICA2016 conference
We will be present with five papers at this year's conference of the International Communication Association in Fukuoka, Japan: // Lutz, C., & Tamò, A. (2016). Communicating with Robots: ANTalyzing the Interaction between Digital Interlocutors and Humans. Paper to be presented at the 2016 ICA Post-Conference “Communicating with Machines: The Rising Power of Digital Interlocutors in Our Lives”, Fukuoka, 14 June 2016. // Blank, G., & Lutz, C. (2016). Benefits and Harms from Internet Use – A Differentiated Analysis in the UK. Paper to be presented at the 2016 ICA Annual Conference, Fukuoka, 9-13 June 2016. // Fieseler, C., Bucher, E., & Lutz, C. (2016). Why Do We Share? Exploring Monetary, Moral and Social-Hedonic Motives for Internet-Mediated Sharing. Paper to be presented at the 2016 ICA Annual Conference, Fukuoka, 9-13 June 2016. // Hoffmann, C. P., Lutz, C., & Poëll, R. (2016). Blasting and Posturing: A Gender Divide in Young Facebook Users’ Online Political Participation. Paper to be presented at the 2016 ICA Annual Conference, Fukuoka, 9-13 June 2016. // Ranzini, G., Lutz, C., & Gouderjaan, M. (2016). Swipe Right: An Exploration of Self-Presentation and Impression Management on Tinder. Paper to be presented at the 2016 ICA Annual Conference, Fukuoka, 9-13 June 2016. You can find more information on this year's ICA conference here: http://www.icahdq.org/conf/
Sabina Bogilović, Miha Škerlavaj and Sut I Wong
New Book Chapter on Cultural Intelligence
Sabina Bogilović, Miha Škerlavaj and Sut I Wong published a book chapter on idea implementation and cultural intelligence. The chapter, titled 'Idea implementation and cultural intelligence', was published in 'Capitalizing on Creativity at Work: Fostering the Implementation of Creative Ideas in Organizations', an edited volume by Škerlavaj et al. In this book chapter, the authors explore the understudied process of how cultural intelligence can enhance idea implementation at the individual level in a culturally diverse work environment. By conducting experimental studies, the authors suggest that employees with high cultural intelligence tend to be more valuable than their colleagues with low cultural intelligence when individuals implement creative ideas in a culturally diverse work environment. The authors also provide some practical examples of how individuals can increase their cultural intelligence in order to better implement creative ideas in a culturally diverse environment.