Diffusion of Virtual Innovation
Drawing on Rogers' diffusion of innovations theory, specifically his innovation decision process model, this paper develops a research framework that identifies the accelerators and inhibitors of virtual world technology adoption. Categorized by level of analysis, specific factors influencing the adoption of virtual world technology by organizations are identified. At the individual level of analysis, factors such as the technology's ease of use and usefulness, as well as the individual's computer self-efficacy, trust, and enjoyment are discussed in terms of their "bottom-up" influence on technology diffusion. At the group level of analysis, different forms of group efficacy (such as computer collective efficacy and virtual team efficacy) are suggested to play a role in virtual world technology adoption and diffusion. Further, group-level technology acceptance factors (including a priori beliefs and attitudes toward the technology, as well as psychosocial variables) are proposed to influence a group's overall valence toward the technology, driving the adoption of the technology Finally, at the organizational level of analysis, technical compatibility, technical complexity, and relative advantage are explored as major factors influencing an organization's willingness to adopt virtual world technology through "top-down" diffusion that follows specific isomorphic processes. Finally, the role of organizational culture is also discussed. Through the identification and discussion of innovation diffusion factors which occur at different levels of analysis and at different stages of the innovation decision process, this study provides a framework for studying the adoption, spread, and continual use of virtual world technology.
Mark A. Fuller, Andrew M. Hardin, and Christopher L. Scott. "Diffusion of Virtual Innovation" The DATA BASE for Advances in Information Systems 38.4 (2007): 40-44.