Despite strong interest in various research disciplines over two decades, adapting the 'flow' theory of Csikszentmihalyi to understand user behavior in information systems, existing literature shows high inconsistencies on both the conceptual and the methodological side. This paper addresses these inconsistencies by considering flow from the perspective of the conceptual and methodological status quo of research in psychology. Based on qualitative and quantitative data of 216 respondents, a consistent conceptualization and measurement of flow via the Flow Short Scale (FSS), which is utilized for the first time in the context of the web, is demonstrated and validated in a nomological network regarding website usage continuance intentions. Building upon this, a cross-section of activities on the web, whereat flow is experienced (flow activities), is collected and categorized by means of qualitative content analysis. Furthermore, the intensity of different aspects of the flow experience and potential for their improvement are disclosed. Looking ahead to the explanation of user behavior and implications for web design, the study makes suggestions for relevant further research.
Mahnke, Rolf; Wagner, Thomas; and Benlian, Alexander, "FLOW EXPERIENCE ON THE WEB: MEASUREMENT VALIDATION AND MIXED METHOD SURVEY OF FLOW ACTIVITIES" (2012). ECIS 2012 Proceedings. 33.