The Sociological Determinants of Internet Use in Tunisian Exporting Companies

The Sociological Determinants of Internet Use in Tunisian Exporting Companies

Latifa Chaari (Higher Institute of Management of Tunis, Tunisia)
Copyright: © 2015 |Pages: 10
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-5888-2.ch677

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Despite the potential of Internet technology, we observe that his impact is not uniform on the performance of Tunisian exporting companies. It mainly depends on its use that differs from one company to another. The limited use of this technology by some Tunisian exporting companies led us to examine the factors that influence this use.

Some researchers in information systems are focused on the characteristics of technology and its potential on organizational performance (Davis, 1989; Ajzen, 1991; Ajzen & Fishbein, 1980). Others are concentrated on the study of individual determinants that impact the acceptance of new technologies (Davis, 1989). From a sociological point of view, the use of a technology varies depending on the social relations and the symbolic structures of social system, such as the corporate culture. Thus, new forms of uses can substitute those recommended by designers and managers. In fact, users can show a variety of behaviors when faced with a new technology. They can reject or embrace this technology and the potential it offers (Agarwal, 2000).

The contribution of our research is to study the effect of social factors on Internet use in Tunisian exporting firms. The theoretical framework of our research is the sociological approach of uses. It focuses on the impact of social practices and individual and collective subjectivity on the use of technology (Millerand, 1998, 1999; Jouet, 2000; Mallet, 2004, 2006; Proulx, 2001; Bachelet & Tournier, 2004).

Pragmatically, our research can be highly useful for practitioners, as it enables to understand the importance of social factors on Internet technology use in Tunisian exporting companies. Our aim is to test the effect of corporate culture and interpersonal trust on Internet use in these companies. Thus, the fundamental question of this research can be formulated as follows:

To what extent the corporate culture and interpersonal trust affect the Internet use in Tunisian exporting companies?

Key Terms in this Chapter

Corporate Culture: A concept that focuses on what is common to the members of the company. It is a set of practices developed by a given group via a process of learning, to facilitate external adaptation and internal integration.

Internet use: A continuum from simple adoption and usage to appropriation.

Interpersonal Trust: A belief that another person is honest and benevolent.

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