Social influence has been shown to profoundly affect human behavior in general and technology adoption (TA) in particular. Over time, multiple definitions and measures of social influence have been introduced to the field of TA research, contributing to an increasingly fragmented landscape of constructs that challenges the conceptual integrity of the field. In this vein, this paper sets out to review how social influence has been conceptualized with regard to TA. In so doing, this paper hopes to inform researchers’ understanding of the construct, provide an overview of its myriad conceptualizations, constructively challenge extant approaches, and provide impulses for future research. A systematic review of the relevant literature uncovers that extant interpretations of social influence are 1) predominantly compliance-based and as such risk overlooking identification- and internalization-based effects, and 2) primarily targeted at the individual level, thereby neglecting the impact of socially rich environments. Building upon these insights, this paper develops an integrated perspective on social influence in TA research that encourages scholars to pursue a multi-theoretical understanding of social influence at the interface of users, social referents, and technology.

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