Polychronicity & Boundary Management - An exploratory study


Nowadays people spend more and more time on their mobile phones and are always available for communication requests. How people deal with interruptions through various kinds of messages from different contexts in their lives is subject to boundary management. Studies suggested that polychronicity, the trait describing one’s preference of handling multiple tasks simultaneously, has an impact on how individuals perceive and react to interruptions via digital communication media. This paper examines potential relations between a polychronic orientation and strategies used in boundary management. In an exploratory study, a method for boundary profiling was combined with a scale to measure the polychronic orientation of individuals. The results were examined for possible relationships between them and show that individuals with a polychronic orientation identify a lower number of contexts than individuals with a monochronic orientation. We could also find indications that polychronic individuals have a tendency to find interruptions from other contexts in their lives more acceptable than monochronic individuals.

Proceedings of ECCE 2021
Stefan Oppl
Stefan Oppl
Professor for Technology Enhanced Learning

My research interests include technology-enhanced learning, socio-technical systems design and HCI