Developing a Construct of Online Recommendation Agent Quality and Investigating the Relationship of Quality, Initial and Continuous Trust Building, and Adoption Intention

Project: National Science and Technology CouncilNational Science and Technology Council Academic Grants

Project Details


Providing online recommendation agents to users for shopping assistance have been becoming an emergent trend for e-tailers and website, since the effective use of recommendations agents leads to greater customer loyalty to e-tailers and higher sales. Yet, many online shoppers have negative reaction to recommendation agents and stop in use them. Researchers suggest that trust in recommendation agents is critical to customers’ intention of adopting recommendation agents. Several studies focus on initial trust building and propose various antecedents from different perspectives. Some factors are associated with each other and some factors affect continuous trust building, rather than initial trust. The main objective of finding out antecedents is to reflect “perceived quality” of recommendation agents. However, the only way to generate initial trust is to assess the overall quality of the target based on prominent features. Accordingly, it is worth exploring this important determinant of initial trust building – quality of recommendation agents. Besides, the adoption of recommendation agents is not only a purely cognitive decision process, but also an affective reaction. Customers view usage of recommendation agents as a rational choice in the initial stages and then will affectively engage in continuous adopting recommendation agents when they think using recommendation agents become personalized tools. Accordingly, both initial and continuous trust building are important for adoption intention in recommendation agents. Hence, this two-year study will develop a construct of Recommendation Agents Quality and investigate initial and continuous trust building and their influence on intention toward usage of recommendation agents from the perspective of theory of reasoned action and McKnight’s trust building model. In first year, a construct of Recommendation Agents Quality will be developed through in-depth literature review, several field interviews, and questionnaire design with factor analyses. In second year, a two-stage approach will be adopted to investigate the relationship of quality, trust building (initial trust and continuous trust) and trust intention by conducting a laboratory experiment. Moreover, this study will investigate the influence economical and experience-based psychological factors on continuous trust building, since the development of continuous trust also depends on repeated satisfied interaction between customers and recommendation agents and totally assessment of recommendation agents’ performance. Based on our results, several theoretical and managerial implications will be proposed.

Project IDs

Project ID:PF9709-0829
External Project ID:NSC97-2410-H182-013
Effective start/end date01/08/0831/07/09


  • Recommendation Agents Quality
  • Initial Trust Building
  • Continuous Trust Building
  • Experience-Based Factors
  • Economical Factors
  • Construct Development
  • Two-Stage Model


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