The Impact of Digital Distractions and Multitasking on Crowdworkers' Work-life Balance

Lead Research Organisation: University College London
Department Name: Computer Science


With the advent of smartphones, the nature of notifications has subtly changed, with users receiving over 60 alerts per day from various digital sources. The overall objecttive of the research is to investigate the role of digital distractions on work-related stress for crowdworkers and to explore ways in which their work-life balance could be improved with the use of productivity management tools.
In the first phase of the research, the prject will use contextual inquiry to look at the types of notifications crowdworkers encounter while completing tasks in order to understand behaviours and concerns about interruptions. Conversing with users in the context of their work and directly observing them will informa the next phase of the research, in which measures of stress and focus levels and digital activity logs will be used to ascertain their perceived effects on productivity.
The project could progress by exploring how notification fatigue might have an adverse effect on work related tasks for crowdworkers. Furthermore, data analysed via quantitative and qualitative methods will be used to investigate possible means to regain control over digital distractions - these could take the form of digital interventions to help improve productivity and reduce stress in crowdworkers.


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Studentship Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Student Name
EP/N509577/1 01/10/2016 30/09/2021
1940310 Studentship EP/N509577/1 25/09/2017 30/09/2021 Laura Lascau