Service robots or human staff? The role of performance goal orientation in service robot adoption

Dewi Tojib, Ting Hin Ho, Yelena Tsarenko, Iryna Pentina

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Understanding the determinants of customer choice between human staff or service robots will assist service firms to encourage service robot adoption and improving their return on investment. Current technology adoption theories fail to consider users’ performance goal orientations as a motivational driver, and this is an important omission. In four studies, with participants recruited from market research (M-Turk, Qualtrics) and consumer panels, this research investigates how performance goal orientations – a desire for achievement (PAP) and a desire to avoid failure (PAV) – act as the motivational drivers of service robot adoption. The first study tests the direct effect of PAP and PAV on service robot adoption. The second and third studies test challenge and threat appraisals as mediators between both measured and manipulated PAP and PAV on service robot adoption in different contexts. The final study tests the priming effect of spontaneous social influence on challenge appraisal and how this affects service robot adoption. Findings show that: PAP and PAV have a direct influence on service robot adoption; challenge appraisal mediates the aforementioned relationship; and spontaneous social influence increases challenge appraisal for customers with a PAV orientation. The theoretical and practical implications of these outcomes are discussed in detail.

Original languageEnglish
Article number107339
Number of pages16
JournalComputers in Human Behavior
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2022


  • Challenge appraisal
  • Goal orientation
  • Performance approach
  • Performance avoidance
  • Service robot adoption

Cite this