Measuring Behavioural Intention to Accept Autonomous Vehicles: A Structural Equation Model

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis


For decades, the user acceptance of information technology has been a vital field of study for psychologists and sociologists investigating new insights into the acceptance of behaviour at individual and organisational levels. Despite numerous models being proposed to predict consumer use of the behaviour of technology; the latest models and theories are still not able to fully capture the complexity of the factors influencing people behavioural intention to adopt Autonomous Vehicles (AV).
The research adopts a pragmatic approach using multiple methods that was executed in the following phases. In phase I, the key factors influencing behavioural intention to use AV were identified using an initial survey with 408 participants, interviews were conducted with experts in the field of Psychology, Sociology and Computer Science, then the model was developed, and finally the hypothesis defined. In phase II, the conceptual model was empirically validated and refined by employing a survey research approach with another 482 participants. The constructs were operationalised by developing and validating the research instrument with content validity, reliability, construct validity approach and Structure Equation Modelling (SEM). In phase III a tool for information visualisation was developed bridging the gap between theoretical concepts and practical industry requirements.
The findings suggested that all the constructs included in the conceptual model significantly influence the consumers’ behavioural intention (BI) to adopt AVs. Based on our evaluation we take the determinants self-efficacy, perceived safety, trust, anxiety and legal regulations into consideration and propose a theoretical AV technology acceptance model (AVTAM) by incorporating these determinants into the Unified Theory of Acceptance and Use of Technology (UTAUT2) model. The results show that anxiety is negatively correlated with BI. The contribution of this research towards theory is the development and validation of a research instrument that future studies can utilize to examine AV and other similar emerging technologies from a consumers’ perspective. An added contribution to practice is the development of an information visualisation tool to further explain different group behaviours towards technology adoption.
Date of Award31 Mar 2020
Original languageEnglish

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