Technology-induced Stress


The identification of causes of technology-induced stress and the uncovering of consequences for the technology user is the subject of this complex of topics. Since the causes and consequences depend on the environment in which the technology is used, a distinction is made between IT stress in companies and stress during IT use in the private environment. In addition, the complex of topics not only deals with the causes and consequences but also with coping with technology-related stress.

In these topics the ISS team focuses on the one hand on the question which factors trigger the stress of the end user and on the other hand on how individuals react to this stress (psychologically and behavioral). Building on this, the question of how IT users cope with technology-related stress is a focus of the ISS team.

Topic of research

Technology-related stress in companies

Taking into account the fact that IT is used ubiquitously in companies and is thus regarded as a main driver of the work stress of white-collar workers, the following questions are the focus of the ISS team's consideration:

  • Which technology-related stressors cause stress and what are their consequences (e.g. low satisfaction with IT, low job satisfaction, high willingness to change)?
  • Does the use of technology cause the same amount of stress in IT and non-IT professionals, or are the causes and consequences different in these two groups?
  • What influence does the introduction of new IT have on the perception of stress?
  • Which methods can be used to reduce stress perception?
  • Does experience in dealing with IT reduce individual stress perception?

The research results on technology-related stress in companies have been published in the Journal of Strategic Information System and European Journal of Information System as well as in the conference proceedings of international conferences (e.g. ICIS). For this purpose, several empirical surveys in companies as well as laboratory experiments were carried out.

Technology-related stress during IT use in private environments

Stress caused by the use of technologies in the private environment is regarded as a separate issue, since end users can reduce or completely discontinue the intensity of IT use at any time. In this respect, a different perspective on the consequences of IT-related stress is necessary. But stressors also differ from those in the organizational context, since technologies are used in the private context for other reasons. The ISS team therefore focuses on the following questions:

  • How does the stress perception of IT users differ depending on their predisposition?
  • What are special stressors when IT is used in private environments (e.g. social stressors)?
  • Why do individuals continue to use a technology even though they feel stressed by it?

Based on the results of several empirical surveys, research results could be published in the Information Systems Journal and European Journal of Information Systems as well as presented at various international conferences (e.g. ICIS, ECIS, WI) and published in their conference proceedings.

Coping with technology-related stress

The consequences of technology-related stress manifest themselves, for example, in reduced satisfaction, exhaustion, or burnout. Coping theory shows, however, that individuals who find themselves in stressful situations use strategies to cope with them. Applying a coping strategy can thus directly or indirectly reduce the causes or consequences of technology-related stress. This leads the ISS team to the following questions:

  • How do IT users manage the causes and consequences of technology-related stress?
  • What role does the cognitive assessment of a situation play in coping with technology-related stress?
  • What are the different coping strategies and how can they be classified?
  • What role does a reappraisal of a technology-related stress situation play?
  • Are all coping strategies effective or do IT users have to discard coping strategies if they do not work?

Based on experimental and survey-based research approaches, research results on this topic have already been published in international journals (e.g. ACM SIGMIS Database) as well as at various international conferences (e.g. ECIS, HCISS, AMCIS) and published in conference proceedings.

In the press (selected)

  • Uni Bamberg: Rund 3.35 Millionen Euro für neuen Bayerischen Forschungsverbund „ForDigitHealth“ - Wirtschaftsinformatiker der Universität Bamberg forschen zu digitalem Stress, 4.6.2019
  • Digitales Fasten / Auszeit von sozialen Medien wie Instagram, 27.7.2018
    RTL Aktuell
  • Das Stress-Netzwerk, 10.6.2016
  • Facebook und Co sorgen bei Dauernutzern schnell für Stress, 15.4.2016
    Süddeutsche Zeitung

Selected publications

  • Tarafdar, M., Maier, C., Laumer, S., and Weitzel, T. (2019)
    Explaining the link between technostress and technology addiction for social networking sites: A study of distraction as a coping behavior. Information Systems Journals (ISJ),
  • Maier, C., Laumer, S., Wirth, J., and Weitzel, T. (2019)
    Technostress and the hierarchical levels of personality: a two-wave study with multiple data samples. European Journal of Information Systems (EJIS) (24:4), p. 1-27,
  • Pflügner, K., Mattke, J., and Maier, C. (2019)
    Who is Stressed by Using ICTs? A Qualitative Comparison Analysis with the Big Five Personality Traits to Understand Technostress. Proceedings of the 14th International Conference on Wirtschaftsinformatik, Siegen, Germany
    Best Paper Award
  • Weinert, C., Maier, C., Laumer, S., and Weitzel, T. (2019)
    IS Reappraisal and Technology Adaptation Behaviors: A Longitudinal Study During an IS Implementation. Forthcoming in: ACM SIGMIS Database
  • Maier, C., Laumer, S., Weinert, C., and Weitzel, T. (2015)
    The Effects of Technostress and Switching-stress on Discontinued Use of Social Networking Services: A Study of Facebook Use
    Information Systems Journal (ISJ) (25:3), p. 275-308,
  • Maier, C., Laumer, S., Eckhardt, A., and Weitzel, T. (2015)
    Giving too much Social Support: Social Overload on Social Networking Sites. European Journal of Information Systems (EJIS) (24:5), p. 447-464,
  • Maier, C., Laumer, S., Eckhardt, A., and Weitzel, T. (2013): Analyzing the impact of HRIS implementations on HR personnel's job satisfaction and turnover intention. The Journal of Strategic Information Systems (JSIS) (22:3), p. 193-207,