Evonik Digital Research

A joint research project of EVONIK and the University of Duisburg-Essen

Ongoing Research

During the following project phase the engineering team will improve the sensing and machine learning approaches while the psychology team will further investigate how workers perceive the potential benefits and dangers of such a system. Both teams together will use these results to investigate how privacy-sensitive IoT systems can be designed and rolled-out in such a way that they fulfill their task while enjoying acceptance on the user side.

With regard to the development of the multi-stage emergency recognition system and based on the results from study I and II, the next steps are to focus specifically on the employees of Evonik in terms of determining particular requirements before implementing the system. Depending on the attitudes of Evonik staff regarding privacy and data-tracking as well as their corresponding trust in their employer, a concept needs to be designed in order to prepare the employees for the deployment of the emergency recognition system. Not involving the employees might lead to a decreasing commitment and trust as well as changes regarding the working performance as a consequence.

In order to take contextual factors of smart technology acceptance into consideration we need to investigate further parameters related to its deployment, such as the location of data storage (i.e. whether the collected data is stored locally on the device or in the cloud) or the way data is processed as well as the purpose of the tracking.

As Evonik is an international corporation with subsidiaries in different countries, another objective is to conduct a study with a non-German sample in order to find culture-specific differences among Evonik employees, to foster the highest possible level of acceptance among employees when using the system internationally. A cross-cultural perspective is of particular interest, as the results from study I implicated an effect of the attitude towards tracking on the acceptance of smart technology which again might depend on cultural-based differences.