Defrag and reboot? Consolidating information and communication technology research in I-O psychology

Xinyu Judy Hu, Larissa K. Barber, Youngah Park, Arla Day

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Several decades of research have addressed the role of information and communication technologies (ICTs) in industrial-organizational (I-O) psychology. However, segmented research streams with myriad terminologies run the risk of construct proliferation and lack an integrated theoretical justification of the contributions of ICT concepts. Therefore, by identifying important trends and reflecting on key constructs, findings, and theories, our review seeks to determine whether a compelling case can be made for the uniqueness of ICT-related concepts in studying employee and performance in I-O psychology. Two major themes emerge from our review of the ICT literature: (a) a technology behavior perspective and (b) a technology experience perspective. The technology behavior perspective with three subcategories (the where of work design, the when of work extension, and the what of work inattention) explores how individual technology use can be informative for predicting employee well-being and performance. The technology experience perspective theme with two subcategories (the how of ICT appraisals and why of motives) emphasizes unique psychological (as opposed to behavioral) experiences arising from the technological work context. Based on this review, we outline key challenges of current ICT research perspectives and opportunities for further enhancing our understanding of technological implications for individual workers and organizations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)371-396
Number of pages26
JournalIndustrial and Organizational Psychology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 27 2021


  • Work technology
  • information and communication technology use
  • occupational health psychology
  • work performance
  • work stress
  • worker well-being

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Applied Psychology


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