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Big Data, Little Individual: Considering the Human Side of Big Data

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  17 December 2015

Michael N. Karim*
Affiliation:
Fors Marsh Group, LLC, Arlington, Virginia
Jon C. Willford
Affiliation:
Department of Organizational Sciences and Communication, The George Washington University
Tara S. Behrend
Affiliation:
Department of Organizational Sciences and Communication, The George Washington University
*
Correspondence concerning this article should be addressed to Michael N. Karim, Fors Marsh Group, LLC, 1010 North Glebe Road, Number 510, Arlington, VA 22201. E-mail: mkarim@forsmarshgroup.com

Extract

Guzzo, Fink, King, Tonidandel, and Landis (2015) provide a clear overview of the implications of conducting research using big data. One element we believe was overlooked, however, was an individual-level perspective on big data; that is, what impact does this sort of data collection have on the individuals being studied? As psychologists, the ethics and impact of big data collection from workers should be at the forefront of our minds. In this reply, we use years of research on electronic monitoring and tracking to provide evidence that an individual-level perspective is an essential part of the discussion surrounding industrial–organizational psychology and big data. Specifically, we examine electronic performance monitoring (EPM) literature to identify how the widespread, pervasive collection of employee data affects employees’ attitudes and behaviors.

Type
Commentaries
Copyright
Copyright © Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology 2015 

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References

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