Examining Serendipitous Encounters and Self-Determination in Twitter-Enabled Innovation

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Serendipity refers to unexpected encounters with ideas or insights and their intentional application to achieve favorable outcomes. Despite extensive prior studies, the concept lacks theoretical logic and empirical validation regarding the role of an intentional act in the relationship between serendipitous encounters and their favorable outcomes. Drawing from self-determination theory, we develop a model that highlights the role of needs satisfaction in explaining this relationship. Positioning the empirical context to fortunate discoveries of information and social connections in professional use of Twitter, we validate the model by a cross-sectional survey study of 473 users. The model builds on the observation that individuals' serendipitous encounters are associated with Twitter-enabled innovation, that is, a contextualized form of task innovation. The study findings support the research model revealing that serendipitous encounters are positively associated with needs satisfaction and that needs satisfaction is positively associated with Twitter-enabled innovation. In other words, fortunate discoveries of new information and contacts increase Twitter users' intent to utilize the platform in new ways to accomplish work when the three key psychological needs of autonomy, competence, and relatedness are satisfied.

Original languageEnglish
Article number6665449
Number of pages12
JournalAdvances in Human-Computer Interaction
Publication statusPublished - 2021
Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Publication forum classification

  • Publication forum level 1

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Human-Computer Interaction

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