Doctoral Dissertations

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Human Ecology

Major Professor

Carl L. Dyer

Committee Members

James Moran, Jacquelyn DeJong, John Moore


The purpose of this study was to empirically conceptualize consumer use innovative behavior. By separating use and purchase in innovative behavior, comparing these two innovative behaviors, and identifying the best predictor variables of use innovative behavior over the adoption and post-adoption processes, this study investigated whether use innovative behavior was a viable concept in consumer behavior.

Based on the theoretical framework of consumer innovative behavior and post-adoption usage behavior, this study tested use innovativeness for the clothing product. College students of the University of Tennessee, Knoxville participated in the questionnaire survey for data collection. Five hundred thirty nine responses were used for data analysis. Major statistics used for this study were factor analysis, multiple regression, path analysis, and discriminant analysis.

The empirical findings showed that: 1 ) The consumer's perception of product attributes was the major predictor for use innovativeness, while the consumer's financial resources were more important for purchase innovativeness in differentiating the two innovative behaviors in the adoption process; 2) Consumer innovative groups based on purchase and use innovative behaviors were significantly differentiated from one another; 3) Purchase innovative behavior affected use innovative behavior with the interactions of post-adoption variables; and 4) Use innovative behavior affected the diffusion process through personal influence.

Based on the findings, this study suggests an empirical model for the causes and effects of use innovative behavior on the diffusion process. That is, use innovative behavior was a function of direct and indirect effects of gender, the innovativeness trait, communicated experience, perceived innovation attributes (compatibility), purchase innovative behavior (novelty of purchase), type of product, and usage experience.

The findings indicate that purchase innovative behavior and use innovative behavior are meaningfully separated, and use innovative behavior is a more viable concept in understanding consumer behavior for marketers who are concerned with a long-term relationship with consumers.

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