The rise of the use of Information Technology (IT) in many activities throughout people’s lives has led to questions about the impact on our attention. While most studies in this area have examined the role of task-specific technology, we still know little about the broader role of IT in people’s environments. In this study, we examine how and when exposure to technology affordances, such as having a smartphone at hand, affects focused immersion in a task. Based on theory on construal levels, and confirmed by our study, we posit that higher level, abstract ways of thinking protect against the negative impact of IT affordances on focused immersion. This insight can potentially help individuals tailor their IT environments to their needs for a deeper engagement in their activities. Further, by connecting strands of literature on focused immersion, this work can facilitate the development of a more comprehensive theory of focused immersion.
Zwanenburg, Sander Paul Zwanenburg Paul, "Focused Immersion: When Do Information Technology Affordances Disrupt It?" (2019). ACIS 2019 Proceedings. 52.