|dc.description.abstract||The conceptualisations of the construct of relative advantage within the extant literature on technology adoption do not provide adequate conceptual views of the construct in the context of individuals’ adoption of online e-government services when compared to the brick-and-mortar service method. To address this issue, the current research thesis developed context-specific and comprehensive conceptualisation of the construct of relative advantage. To achieve this objective, the current work (1) conducted a study including two waves of data collection with the goal of deriving the sub-dimensions of relative advantage to be included in the conceptualisation of this construct, (2) confirmed the importance of including these sub-dimensions based on theoretical rationales and findings of prior literature, and (3) developed and validated a multi-dimensional scale to measure the construct following the 10-step procedure prescribed by MacKenzie et al. (2011).
To articulate the conceptual domain of the construct, two waves of data collection were conducted: an exploratory phase with a mixed-methods research design (n = 24) and a confirmatory phase using quantitative data (n = 255). Five first-order sub-dimensions were identified and then modelled as reflective of the second-order construct of relative advantage. These first-order sub-dimensions were: (1) Economic profitability; (2) Immediacy of the reward; (3) Time and effort savings; (4) Convenience - Queue avoidance; and (5) Convenience - Place independent use. Following the requirements of the 10-step procedure, four datasets were collected: preliminary content validity (n = 24), confirmatory content validity (n = 86), pre-test and validation (n = 942), cross-validation (n = 135). The findings suggest that, in general, the multi-dimensional scale of relative advantage developed in the current work exhibit excellent psychometric properties, including its reliability, convergent and discriminant validity. In addition, the nomological validity of the construct of relative advantage was demonstrated by examining its impact on two outcome variables each of which representing a different technology adoption context: intention to use (voluntary context) and satisfaction (mandatory context). The findings indicate that the construct was a good predictor of both outcome variables.
As constructs are regarded as essential constituents of theories (Gregor, 2006), the major theoretical contribution of the current work lies in providing an altered conceptualisation of the construct of relative advantage, which is one of the important characteristics of the innovations in the Innovation Diffusion Theory (IDT) (Rogers & Shoemaker, 1971; Rogers, 1983, 1995, 2003). To enhance the generalisability of the conceptualisation, the current work strived to balance parsimony with comprehensiveness by including sub-dimensions of relative advantage that are (1) consistent with the theoretical foundation of the construct, (2) buttressed by the findings of prior related research and/or (3) more generalisable to other settings. As a result of such research efforts, it is believed that the conceptualisation reported here will provide a strong foundation for future research aiming to study the adoption or use of online e-government services beyond the specific context of investigation of the current work (e.g., a new technology vs. an older technology). Such a conceptualisation of relative advantage, in turn, would permit knowledge to be accumulated in a systematic fashion within contexts of online e-government services adoption by individuals (Benbasat & Barki, 2007; Keen, 1980).||