Diffusion of web technologies and practices: a longitudinal study

Papagiannidis S, Gebka B, Gertner D, Stahl F

Our research objective was to undertake a longitudinally study of how technologies and practices used in web development diffuse over time and whether the diffusion patterns are affected by the regions or the industries in which they take place. The diffusion of web technologies is of interest as, they are highly visible and accessible across the globe and industries by their very nature, which makes it possible to potential adopters to trial them and experience first-hand their relative advantage, compatibility and complexity. Three different cases were chosen, in order to test our hypotheses based on the Diffusion of Innovations Theory. A system was built to collect data using the Wayback Machine. The data collected covered a period of 13 years. Our findings suggest that web innovations may diffuse differently when compared to each other, but also when regions and sectors are considered. Beyond testing the ecological validity of Diffusion of Innovations Theory in web-related technologies, our findings have practical implications which can inform the diffusion of technologies and standards.

Publication type
Article in Journal

Peer reviewed

Publication status


Technological Forecasting and Social Change