Arun’s research in the area of Information Technolgy implementation and Use has examined the adoption, assimilation, and use of IT innovations in a variety of organizational and societal contexts, with a lens towards addressing a key problem and generating value. Within the organizational context, he has examined the adoption and use of computer-aided software engineering by individual developers, the adoption and use of executive of information systems by senior executives, the use of electronic medical records by physicians, and different types of use of CRM systems by sales and marketing personnel in hi-tech environments. At the societal level, he has studied the growth in the diffusion of internet technologies, the adoption and use of free internet technologies, the utilization of e-health kiosks to change infant healthcare practices in rural India, and the use of mobile health technologies in the United States and India. He has brought to bear a variety of cross-disciplinary theoretical perspectives including diffusion of innovation, technology acceptance, individual and social cognition, sense-making, social network analysis, organizational innovation, service innovation, and process innovation to inform these studies. Many of these studies have been in collaboration with scholars across disciplinary lines (e.g., medicine, public policy, social networks) and with organizations and government agencies in different countries.

Selected Publications

This study focuses on the organizational adoption of Executive Information Systems (EIS). A distinction is made between two related, complementary EIS capabilities—EIS for collaboration support (EISc) and EIS for decision support (EISd). EISc is relatively standardized and replicable, while EISd has to be developed in situ given the specific characteristics of the user and task. The adoption process is conceptualized as an initial transition from a state of nonadoption to adoption (adoption status) and subsequent internal propagation of the technology (adoption level). Data collected from a national survey are used to test hypotheses between identified contextual variables and the adoption status and adoption level of EISc and EISd. Adopters and nonadopters of both EISc and EISd do not differ in their organization size, suggesting that the traditional paradigm of “EIS as a technology for large firms” is no longer true. Environmental uncertainty is found to promote the transition from a state of nonadoption to adoption of both EISc and EISd while continuing to catalyze the internal propagation of EISd. While no differences are observed in IS department size between adopters and nonadopters of EISc, our results suggest that larger IS departments provide the resource base to explore the less standardized of the two capabilities, EISd. IS support is also found to be critical for the subsequent internal propagation of EISd. Furthermore, the adoption level of both EISc and EISd are found to be promoted by top management support. Implications of these results are discussed for the organizational adoption of EIS.

Tracking the Internet's global diffusion is a daunting but increasingly important task, especially for network capacity planners. A 1997 report found that Internet consists of more than 16 million registered host computers. Conceived initially as a demonstration project for the U.S. government, the Internet today aggregates traffic from a vastly wider set of constituencies. And commercial use now accounts for 58% of Internet traffic, far exceeding the network's original purposes in research and education. But consumers of Internet-related services are regularly frustrated by slow response time, inaccessible online services and breakdowns leading to services being unavailable. These problems can follow inadequate capacity planning caused by ignorance of the Internet growth process. Understanding Internet growth patterns involves assessing alternative models for the Internet diffusion process. The internal influence model is one class of models used to study the diffusion phenomenon. These models are informed by the diffusion of innovation and various economic theories and assume that nonadopters of an innovation are increasingly likely to imitate adopters over time. Empirical studies have used these models to investigate the diffusion of such communication systems as residential telephones. Internet governing bodies, task forces, like the Internet Engineering Task Force and commercial services also use such models to study Internet growth. The article explored two commonly used internal influence models-Logistic and Gompertz-both of which assume variable growth rates whereby the growth rate first increases and then decreases over time to achieve a finite subscriber saturation level. It is unclear to researchers and planners whether internal influence models adequately convey the Internet diffusion process. There appears to be some conflict between assumptions underlying the models and the context of the Internet diffusion phenomenon.

The purpose of the present study is to empirically and theoretically assess DeLone and McLean's (1992) and Seddon's (1997) models of information systems (IS) success in a quasi-voluntary IS use context. Structural modeling techniques were applied to data collected by questionnaire from 274 system users of an integrated student information system at a midwestern university. The Seddon structural model and the DeLone and McLean structural model each contained five variables (system quality, information quality, perceived usefulness, user satisfaction, and IS use). Both models exhibit reasonable fit with the collected data. The empirical findings are assessed in the broader theoretical context of the IS success literature, including the Technology Acceptance Model and the Theory of Planned Behavior. Our results support DeLone and McLean's focus on integrated IS success models and their observation that IS success models need to be carefully specified in a given context. The Seddon model conceptually elaborates and clarifies aspects of the DeLone and McLean model, thereby effectively integrating core theoretical relationships espoused in the IS success literature. Our study also supports Seddon's three construct categories (system and information quality, general perceptual measures about net benefits about IS use, and IS behavior), as defining IS success and its impact on nature of IS use.

Digital inequality is one of the most critical issues in the knowledge economy. The private and public sectors have devoted tremendous resources to address such inequality, yet the results are inconclusive. Theoretically grounded empirical research is needed both to expand our understanding of digital inequality and to inform effective policy making and intervention. The context of our investigation is a city government project, known as the LaGrange Internet TV initiative, which allowed all city residents to access the Internet via their cable televisions at no additional cost. We examine the residents' post-implementation continued use intentions through a decomposed theory of planned behavior perspective, which is elaborated to include personal network exposure. Differences in the behavioral models between socio-economically advantaged and disadvantaged users who have direct usage experience are theorized and empirically tested. The results reveal distinct behavioral models and isolate the key factors that differentially impact the two groups. The advantaged group has a higher tendency to respond to personal network exposure. Enjoyment and confidence in using information and communication technologies, availability, and perceived behavioral control are more powerful in shaping continued ICT use intention for the disadvantaged. Implications for research and practice are discussed.

Digital inequality, or unequal access to and use of information and communication technologies (ICT), is a severe problem preventing the socioeconomically disadvantaged (SED) from participating in a digital society. To understand the critical resources that contribute to digital inequality and inform public policy for stimulating initial and continued ICT usage by the SED, we drew on capital theories and conducted a field study to investigate: (1) the forms of capital for using ICT and how they differ across potential adopters who are SED and socioeconomically advantaged (SEA); (2) how these forms of capitals are relatively impacted for the SEA and the SED through public policy for ICT access; and (3) how each form of capital influences the SED's intentions to use initially and to continue to use ICT. The context for our study involved a city in the southeastern United States that offered its citizens free ICT access for Internet connectivity. Our results show that SED potential adopters exhibited lower cultural capital but higher social capital relative to the SEA. Moreover, the SED who participated in the city's initiative realized greater positive gains in cultural capital, social capital, and habitus than the SEA. In addition, we find that the SED's initial intention to use ICT was influenced by intrinsic motivation for habitus, self-efficacy for cultural capital, and important referents' expectations and support from acquaintances for social capital. Cultural capital and social cultural capital also complemented each other in driving the SED's initial use intention. The SED's continued use intention was affected by both intrinsic and extrinsic motivations for habitus and both knowledge and self-efficacy for cultural capital but was not affected by social capital. We also make several recommendations for future research on digital inequality and ICT acceptance to extend and apply the proposed capital framework.

How can firms extract value from already-implemented information technologies (IT) that support the work processes of employees? One approach is to stimulate employees to engage in post-adoptive extended use, i.e., to learn and apply more of the available functions of the implemented technologies to support their work. Such learning behavior of extending functions in use is ingrained in a process by which users make sense of the technologies in the context of their work system. This study draws on sensemaking theory to develop a model to understand the antecedents, contingencies, and consequences of customer service employees' extended use of customer relationship management (CRM) technologies. The model is tested using multisource longitudinal data collected through a field study of one of the world's largest telecommunications service providers. Our results suggest that employees engage in post-adoptive sensemaking at two levels: technology and work system. We found that sensemaking at both of these levels impacts the extended use of CRM technologies. Employees' sensemaking at the technology level is influenced by employees' assessment of technology quality, whereas employees' sensemaking at the work system level is influenced by customers' assessment of service quality. Moreover, in the case of low technology quality and low service quality, specific mechanisms for employee feedback should be conceptualized and aligned at two levels: through employee participation at the technology level and through work system coordination at the work system level. Such alignment can mitigate the undesirable effect of low technology quality and low service quality, thereby facilitating extended use. Importantly, we found that extended use amplifies employees' service capacity, leading to better objective performance. Put together, our findings highlight the critical role of employees' sensemaking about the implemented technologies in promoting their extended use of IT and improving their work performance.

This work seeks to complement and extend prior work by using a multidisciplinary approach to explain electronic medical records (EMR) system use and consequent performance (here, patient satisfaction) among physicians during early stages of the implementation of an EMR. This was a quantitative study, with data obtained from three distinct sources: individual-level and social-network data from employees; use data from EMR system logs; and patient satisfaction data from patients and/or authorized decision-makers. Responses were obtained from 151 physicians and 8440 patient satisfaction surveys over the course of a 1-year period at the shakedown phase of an EMR system implementation. Physicians who were better connected, both directly and indirectly, to their peers-that is, other physicians-for advice on their work, used the system less than those who were less connected. In addition to such social network ties, demographic characteristics (gender and age), three personality characteristics (openness to experience, agreeableness and extroversion) and a key technology perception (perceived usefulness) predicted EMR system use. For hospital administrators and other stakeholders, understanding the contributors to, and the relative importance of, various factors in explaining EMR system use, and its impact on patient satisfaction is of great importance. The factors identified in this work that influence a physician's use of EMR systems can be used to develop interventions and applications that can increase physician buy-in and use of EMR systems.

An increasing number of organizations are now implementing customer relationship management (CRM) systems to support front-line employees' service tasks. With the belief that CRM can enhance employees' service quality, management often mandates employees to use the implemented CRM. However, challenges emerge if/when employees are dissatisfied with using the system. To understand the role of front-line employee users' satisfaction with their mandated use of CRM in determining their service quality, we conducted a field study in one of the largest telecommunications service organizations in China and gathered time-lagged data from self-reported employee surveys, as well as from the firm's archival data sources. Our results suggest that employees' overall user satisfaction (UserSat) with their mandated use of CRM has a positive impact on employee service quality (ESQ) above and beyond the expected positive impacts that job dedication (JD) and embodied service knowledge (ESK) have on ESQ. Interestingly, the positive effect of UserSat on ESQ is comparable to the positive effects of JD and ESK, respectively, on ESQ. Importantly, UserSat and ESK have a substitutive effect on ESQ, suggesting that the impact of UserSat on ESQ is stronger/weaker for employees with lower/higher levels of ESK. Finally, ESQ predicts customer satisfaction with customer service employees (CSWCSE); ESQ also fully mediates the impacts of UserSat and ESK, and partially mediates the impact of JD, on CSWCSE. The results of this study emphasize the importance of user satisfaction in determining employees' task outcomes when use of an information system is mandated.

We identify two post-acceptance information system (IS) usage behaviors related to how employees leverage implemented systems. Routine use (RTN) refers to employees’ using IS in a routine and standardized manner to support their work, and innovative use (INV) describes employees’ discovering new ways to use IS to support their work. We use motivation theory as the overarching perspective to explain RTN and INV and appropriate the rich intrinsic motivation (RIM) concept from social psychology to propose a conceptualization of RIM toward IS use, which includes intrinsic motivation toward accomplishment (IMap), intrinsic motivation to know (IMkw), and intrinsic motivation to experience stimulation (IMst). We also consider the influence of perceived usefulness (PU)—a representative surrogate construct of extrinsic motivation toward IS use—on RTN and INV. We theorize the relative impacts of the RIM constructs and PU on RTN and INV and the role of personal innovativeness with IT (PIIT) in moderating the RIM constructs’ influences on INV. Based on data from 193 employees using a business intelligence system at one of the largest telecom service companies in China, we found (1) PU had a stronger impact on RTN than the RIM constructs, (2) IMkw and IMst each had a stronger impact on INV than either PU or IMap, and (3) PIIT positively moderated the impact of each RIM construct on INV. Our findings provide insights on managing RTN and INV in the post-acceptance stage.

We examine sourcing professionals’ work context to conceptualize how they use sourcing enterprise systems (SESs) and to understand when SES use results in positive/negative job outcomes. We differentiate between SES use for supplier selection and supplier governance, identify sourcing professionals’ work process interdependence as a moderator for the impacts of SES use on job satisfaction, and suggest job satisfaction mediates the impacts of SES use on job performance. We conducted a field study of sourcing professionals’ SES use at one of the largest consumer product companies in the United States, which has implemented an SES to innovate its sourcing professionals’ work processes. Based on our analysis of the survey and qualitative data we collected, we found the impacts of both types of SES use (1) to be negative on job satisfaction when work process interdependence was high, (2) to be positive on job satisfaction when work process interdependence was low, and (3) to be mediated by job satisfaction for job performance. We discuss the implications of our findings for the literature at the intersection of information systems and operations management as well as for the information technology enabled innovation of sourcing processes and, more generally, complex business processes.

While there is a rich body of literature on information system (IS) innovations, there is a limited understanding of the role IS leaders individual factors and their appraisals of technological factors play in organizations adoption of IS innovations. We address these gaps in the IS literature by focusing on an IS process innovation – namely, computer-aided software engineering (CASE) – which is targeted at the core activities of systems development/maintenance in IS departments. We specifically examine how organizations CASE adoption decision is impacted by (1) two individual factors of IS leaders (i.e., leaders hierarchical position and job tenure) and (2) their perceptions of technological factors (i.e., relative advantage and technological complexity of CASE). Data were gathered from IS leaders at 350 organizations in the United States using a national cross-sectional survey. The findings suggest that IS leaders hierarchical position and their job tenure significantly differentiate CASE adopters from non-adopters. IS leaders at lower levels of the organizational hierarchy and with shorter job tenure made the adoption decisions in adopter organizations, while IS leaders at higher levels of the organizational hierarchy and with longer job tenure made the adoption decisions in non-adopter organizations. The findings also reveal that relative advantage has two dimensions – namely, perceived efficacy advantage and perceived efficiency advantage – and IS leaders evaluation of the perceived efficacy advantage of CASE differentiates adopters from non-adopters. The study has important implications for our theoretical and practical understanding of the factors related to IS leaders that are influential in the organizational adoption of IS innovations.