Cultural Effects on Technology Performance and Utilization: A Comparison of U.S. and Canadian Users

Cultural Effects on Technology Performance and Utilization: A Comparison of U.S. and Canadian Users

Susan K. Lippert (Drexel University, USA) and John A. Volkmar (Otterbein College, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-138-4.ch018
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Research to date on information technology (IT) adoption has focused primarily on homogeneous single country samples. This study integrates the Theory of Reasoned Action (TRA) and the Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) with Hofstede’s (1980, 1983) Masculinity/Femininity (MAS-FEM) work value dimension to focus instead on post adoption attitudes and behaviors among a mixed gender sample of 366 United States and Canadian users of a specialized supply chain IT. We test 11 hypotheses about attitudes towards IT within and between subgroups of users classified by nationality and gender. Consistent with the national MAS-FEM scores and contrary to the conventional consideration of the U.S. and Canada as a unitary homogenous cultural unit, we found significant differences between U.S. men and women, but not between Canadian men and women. These results support the importance of the MAS-FEM dimension—independent of gender—on user attitudes and help to clarify the relationship between culture and gender effects. Implications for managers responsible for technology implementation and management are discussed and directions for future research are offered.
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In today’s world of information technology (IT), there are many paths to growth and development through new system design and the generalizability of applications. The concept of globalization in business practice has infiltrated the use and management of technologies. Nominally stated, globalization of IT involves the use of technologies across cultural boundaries, including country, region, industry, geography, and social demography. Many business operations today have segmented their activities across wide geographic domains, including operations that require coordination between units located in different countries or regions. The goal behind the implementation of new IT is the integration of operations and the use of common elements, such as language, functions and scales, across social group (e.g., nationality and gender) boundaries. The degree to which this integration is successful can have a profound effect on the functional utilization of systems to support operations. Of these elements, the need to develop and apply a common metric of technology performance provides a substantial challenge, both within and between groups. This challenge is magnified by the differences in value and attitudinal orientations among technology users who apply different judgments, assessments, and evaluations in their daily utilization of information systems.

Global competitive pressures are compelling firms in supply chains to continually evaluate and re-assess their network designs. In doing so, many are finding that cross-border organizational linkages are becoming essential for developing and maintaining effective strategic partnerships. Maintaining these cross-border relationships requires not only developing, implementing, and maintaining a consistent technology across partnering organizations, but also the capability to effectively manage cultural differences across groups of technology users.

With the increasing globalization of manufacturing and service businesses around the world, the adoption and utilization of new technology in the workplace constitutes a vital aspect of creating and maintaining organizational productivity and competitiveness (Hicks & Nivin, 2000). Such technologies are recognized as drivers of globalization because of the coordination and control capabilities they provide (Deresky, 2006; Hill, 1997). On a micro level, the integration of supply chain management networks across borders highlights the importance of both software and hardware technologies in facilitating the visibility, inter-organizational coordination, and higher levels of performance necessary to make these diverse systems work effectively (Hannon, 2003; Trebilcock, 2001).

The reliance on cross-border integration of value-producing activities results in the offshore sourcing of intermediate manufactured goods and services (e.g., software engineering, customer service, and reservation services) to both developed and developing countries (Esterl, 2004; Gumpert, 2004). This means that the particular information technologies that have been designed to facilitate and manage such integration must be implemented and used simultaneously by organizations and workers of different nations and cultures, who bring different value sets and attitudinal orientations to the work tasks. For managers charged with responsibility for the performance of distributed supply chain activities, the potential difficulties associated with implementing new IT in cross-national settings add an important dimension of complexity to their task.

The performance of a technology is a function both of its capabilities and the extent to which these capabilities are used by the individual technology operators within the workplace. Thus, a better understanding of factors associated with technology performance is useful for organizations and provides an important tool to help managers more effectively introduce and manage new systems.

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Associate Editors
Table of Contents
M. Gordon Hunter, Felix B. Tan
M. Gordon Hunter, Felix B. Tan
Chapter 1
Alexander Y. Yap
Why are some countries successful with e-commerce while others flounder? This chapter is an update of an earlier research study that the authors... Sample PDF
A Composite Model for E-Commerce Diffusion: Revisited
Chapter 2
Robert M. Davison, Yuan Li, Carol S.P. Kam
In the last few years, Web-based surveys have received increased attention given their potential to cut the costs and time associated with... Sample PDF
Web-Based Data Collection in China
Chapter 3
Jaymeen R. Shah
Privacy laws for the Internet are difficult to develop and implement domestically and internationally. A clear problem is how such laws are limited... Sample PDF
Privacy Protection Overseas as Perceived by USA-Based IT Professionals
Chapter 4
Hongxin Zhao, Seung Kim, Taewon Suh, Jianjun Du
This study attempts to examine empirically how social institutional factors relate to Internet diffusion in 39 countries. Based on nine-year... Sample PDF
Social Institutional Explanations of Global Internet Diffusion: A Cross-Country Analysis
Chapter 5
Somya Joshi, Michael Barrett, Geoff Walsham, Sam Cappleman
This article investigates how, and with what success, global organisations design computer-based systems for knowledge sharing which aim to balance... Sample PDF
Balancing Local Knowledge Within Global Organisations Through Computer-Based Systems: An Activity Theory Approach
Chapter 6
Kevin K.W. Ho, Byungjoon Yoo, Seunghee Yu, Kar Yan Tam
While previous studies on buy-it-now (BIN) auctions focus on the impact of BIN format on economic performances, our study focuses on factors that... Sample PDF
The Effect of Culture and Product Categories on the Level of Use of Buy-It-Now (BIN) Auctions by Sellers
Chapter 7
Shirish C. Srivastava, Thompson S.H. Teo
Though policy makers and governments are interested in understanding the returns from e-Government implementation, there are relatively few... Sample PDF
A Framework for Understanding Returns from E-Government
Chapter 8
Juan Juan Zhang, Sang-Yong Tom Lee
This article studies the role of international spillover of information and communication technology (ICT) in economic growth. We examine the... Sample PDF
A Time Series Analysis of International ICT Spillover
Chapter 9
William Wresch, Simon Fraser
Studies summarized by the United Nations Commission on Trade and Development continue to show that Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in developing... Sample PDF
Technological Hurdles to Caribbean E-Commerce: Responses by Innovative Managers
Chapter 10
Robert M. Davidson, Carol S.P. Kim, Maggie Y. Li, Yuan Li, Carol X.J. Ou
In the last few years, Web-based surveys have received increased attention given their potential to cut the costs and time associated with... Sample PDF
Web-Based Surveys in China
Chapter 11
David Gefen, Tsipi Heart
Deliberate exploitation of natural resources and excessive use of environmentally abhorrent materials have resulted in environmental disruptions... Sample PDF
On the Need to Include National Culture as a Central Issue in E-Commerce Trust Beliefs
Chapter 12
Steven Hornik
The horizontal and vertical dimensions of individualism and collectivism are an important characteristic of cultures. These dimensions have many... Sample PDF
Culture's Impact on Technology Mediated Learning: The Role of Horizontal and Vertical Individualism and Collectivism
Chapter 13
Tamara Dinev, Massimo Bellotto, Paul Hart, Vincenzo Russo, Ilaria Serra, Christian Colautti
The study examines differences in individual’s privacy concerns and beliefs about government surveillance in Italy and the United States. By... Sample PDF
Internet Users' Privacy Concerns and Beliefs About Government Surveillance: An Exploratory Study of Differences Between Italy and the United States
Chapter 14
Shaobo Ji, Qingfei Min, Weihe Han
The purpose of this study is to review current research activities concerning information systems (IS) in mainland China. We thus examined Chinese... Sample PDF
Information Systems Research in China: An Empirical Study
Chapter 15
John Lim
Two seemingly disparate phenomena, advancement in computing technologies and rise in complexity of business negotiations owing to globalization... Sample PDF
A Study in the East Asian Context on Computer Support of Pre-Negotiation and Negotiation Stages
Chapter 16
Sang-Woo Lee, Myeong-Cheol Park, Dan J. Kim
This study relies on a customer demand-based view to examine how mobile number portability affects competition in the Korean mobile... Sample PDF
Mobile Number Portability in an Asymmetric Telecommunications Market: Korea Case
Chapter 17
Hazel Taylor
As outsourced and multinational IT projects become more common, managing risks for these projects is increasingly important. The research reported... Sample PDF
Vendor vs. Client Risks in Outsourced IT Projects: An Agency Theory Perspective
Chapter 18
Susan K. Lippert, John A. Volkmar
Research to date on information technology (IT) adoption has focused primarily on homogeneous single country samples. This study integrates the... Sample PDF
Cultural Effects on Technology Performance and Utilization: A Comparison of U.S. and Canadian Users
Chapter 19
Thompson S.H. Teo
The Internet can be used for different purposes ranging from simple Internet presence to using the Internet for business transformation. This study... Sample PDF
Basic vs. Advanced Modes of Internet Adoption: A Singapore Perspective
Chapter 20
Clive Sanford, Anol Bhattacherjee
This article presents an interpretive analysis of the key problems and challenges to technology implementation in developing countries, based on a... Sample PDF
IT Implementation in a Developing Country Municipality: A Sociocognitive Analysis
Chapter 21
Susan A. Sherer
This article investigates IT investment management processes in the U.S. and Portugal. In Portugal compared to the United States, we find less... Sample PDF
Comparative Study of IT Investment Management Processes in U.S. and Portugal
Chapter 22
Ruey-Lin Hsiao
This article examines e-marketplace adoption difficulties from a contextualist perspective. The analysis of industrial characteristics will unearth... Sample PDF
Misaligned Market: The Importance of Industry Context in Technology-Mediated Exchanges
Chapter 23
Syaiful Ali, Peter Green
Information technology plays a significant role enabling organisations to achieve their objectives. Accordingly, the governance mechanisms over the... Sample PDF
IT Governance Mechanisms in Public Sector Organisations: An Australian Context
Chapter 24
Shirley Chan
In most parts of the world, it is generally considered impolite or even rude to pick up an incoming mobile phone call and to have a longer (and... Sample PDF
Mobile Phone Communication Innovation in Multiple Time and Space Zones: The Case of Hong Kong Culture
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