Central and Peripheral Routes to Sustained Technology Usage

24 Pages Posted: 26 May 2006

See all articles by Corey M. Angst

Corey M. Angst

IT, Analytics, and Operations department

Ritu Agarwal

University of Maryland - Robert H. Smith School of Business

Date Written: December 2004


In this paper we combine three theories of attitude and behavior change in an attempt to inform the under-studied concept of sustained technology usage over time. We address two broad research questions (1) what specific processes act to drive behavior change? and (2) does the route of persuasion accepted by the recipient affect the long-term behavior of the recipient, i.e. are the changes enduring? We use Kelman's (1958) processes of attitude change (i.e. compliance, identification, and internalization) as the three mechanisms through which the change can occur. We use the elaboration likelihood model (ELM) to provide a theoretical underpinning for understanding the cognitive elaboration that information recipients use when they are subject to persuasive messages. Finally, social learning theory helps us identify supervisors, work groups, and self as salient referents for behavioral modeling. We test our conceptual model using longitudinal data from a field study of users of a new customer relationship management system in a large financial services institution. Our results show that individuals are influenced to use technology by multiple processes including compliance, identification and internalization, and their usage over a span of one and a half years is either enduring or decreasing depending upon whether or not these information cues are processed through a central or peripheral route.

Keywords: attitude, behavior, compliance, identification, internalization, ELM, CRM, IT use

Suggested Citation

Angst, Corey M. and Agarwal, Ritu, Central and Peripheral Routes to Sustained Technology Usage (December 2004). Robert H. Smith School Research Paper No. RHS 06-014. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=904623 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.904623

Corey M. Angst (Contact Author)

IT, Analytics, and Operations department ( email )

348 Mendoza College of Business
University of Notre Dame
Notre Dame, IN 46556-5646
United States

Ritu Agarwal

University of Maryland - Robert H. Smith School of Business ( email )

College Park, MD 20742-1815
United States

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