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date: 25 November 2020

Abstract and Keywords

We live in a world of communication overload, where there is a wide range of platforms and devices to choose from, each providing massive content, offering different affordances, and fighting for our attention. Mobile technologies have contributed to expectations of anywhere anytime connectedness, making it hard for individuals to switch off. As a result, it can be hard to feel truly disconnected from work. A lack of control over work-home boundary cross-overs and interruptions can reduce post-work recovery, reducing productivity and increasing stress. Technology is not inherently good or bad, but rather, the way it is adopted and used can positively or negatively color one’s experience. As such, in this critical review we take a social constructionist approach to emphasize how communication technologies are challenging, as well as supporting, work-home boundary management. In doing so, we bring together work from occupational psychology (boundary theory) and human-computer interaction (computer-mediated communication and cross-device interaction). Understanding how these aspects interact and influence each other is important in order to support individuals appropriately, inform policies and guidelines, and ensure both social and digital interactions are designed carefully.

Keywords: boundary management, boundary theory, communication technologies, human-computer interaction, mobile technologies, social and digital interactions, social constructionist approach, work-home boundary management

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