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Introducing Emotion-based Personalisation to Cancer Websites: Do Emotions Influence a Preference for Website Features and Reuse Intentions?

This research was primarily concerned with exploring the role of emotions in predicting the preference for personalisation features, and in forming behavioural intentions for cancer websites. Emotion-based personalisation was implemented in several phases to a cancer website developed for the purpose of this research and evaluated in a number of controlled experiments.

The findings indicated that both negative emotions – sadness, fear and surprise - and positive ones – joy and interest - induced reuse intentions. Satisfaction with website personalisation evoked joy and interest, while post-use negative emotions were influenced by the perception about the website usability. The findings indicated that different individual emotions (of the nine basic emotions studied here) influenced users to interact with specific website features and content and/or affected their perception about the usefulness of these features.

The findings further suggested that target users did not express a significant preference for emotion-based personalisation on a cancer website, compared to other options with or without personalisation. Nevertheless, the findings urged for further research, as the website with emotion-based personalisation had the highest usability score. Overall, this research extends the existing theory and recommends rules for adaptation and personalisation algorithms that incorporate user emotions.

Investigator: Sunčica Hadžidedić