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Information Seeking Stopping Behavior in Online Scenarios

The Impact of Task, Technology and Individual Characteristics


Erik Hemmer

The growing amount of information provided via web-based information technologies forces the users of these technologies to stop seeking for information before having acquired all available information. This stopping decision is either made actively following clear guidelines or subconsciously based on the seeker’s intuition. This book analyzes the aforementioned duality by developing and testing a multi-theoretical research model dealing with information seeking stopping behavior in online scenarios. Thus, by delivering insights into the mechanisms that influence information seeking activities, this study does not only advance theory building in the Information Systems discipline and adjacent fields but is also highly relevant for practitioners and developers of information technology.


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3. Research Design


The objective of this study consists in the explanation and prediction of human information seeking and stopping behavior in online settings (Gregor, 2006; We­ ber, 2012). To address the underlying research questions, appropriate reference theories have been selected and combined in a multi-theoretical model. Con­ sequently, two of three major and interdependent building blocks of academic research, namely aims and theories have been described (Dibbern et al., 2004; Laudan, 1984). As the third component of “The Triad Network of Justification” (Laudan, 1984, p. 63), the methods that will be used to validate the hypothesized relationships between the research model’s variables are introduced in this chap­ ter. For this reason, epistemological and ontological assumptions guiding the use of various research strategies are outlined before a suitable research methodology is selected. Thereafter, instruments for collecting and analyzing data are de­ veloped and the data collection process itself is specified (Bhattacherjee, 2012). Due to the fact that the theories underlying the model of information seeking and stopping behavior have been used and validated in many different contexts before, it appears instrumental to follow a confirmatory approach. However, in order to make sure that the theory amalgamation conducted in Section 2.4.1 covers all aspects relevant for addressing the research questions, an exploratory pre-study is conducted first, which helps to refine and corroborate the research model and to validate the research design. 3.1. E pistem ological and O ntological G rounding From a philosophical point of view, every researcher either implicitly or explicitly makes assumptions...

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