HEC-Ecole de gestion de l'Université de Liège
HEC-Ecole de gestion de l'Université de Liège

The robot always rings twice - an empirical investigation of factors that influence trust towards robots in last-mile delivery

Hofmann, Tina ULiège
Promotor(s) : Hazee, Simon ULiège
Date of defense : 3-Sep-2019/10-Sep-2019 • Permalink :
Title : The robot always rings twice - an empirical investigation of factors that influence trust towards robots in last-mile delivery
Author : Hofmann, Tina ULiège
Date of defense  : 3-Sep-2019/10-Sep-2019
Advisor(s) : Hazee, Simon ULiège
Committee's member(s) : Büttgen, Marion 
Limbourg, Sabine ULiège
Language : English
Number of pages : 70
Keywords : [en] Robot CEP Ecommerce LastMile Last-Mile Delivery
Discipline(s) : Business & economic sciences > Marketing
Name of the research project : The robot always rings twice - an empirical investigation of factors that influence trust towards robots in last-mile delivery
Target public : Researchers
Professionals of domain
General public
Institution(s) : Université de Liège, Liège, Belgique
Degree: Master en sciences de gestion, à finalité spécialisée en Marketing
Faculty: Master thesis of the HEC-Ecole de gestion de l'Université de Liège


[en] The last-mile delivery market is characterized by disruptive changes and trends, like the unstoppable enormous growth of e-commerce orders in the upcoming years as well as changing customer needs, demanding new delivery services like same-day or instant delivery. Based on these profound transformation of the market, new technologies are on the rise changing the area of overcoming the last mile– the delivery service to the customer’s home. One out of the most promising solutions is the usage of robots for the task of delivery. For a successful deployment of delivery robots, the end-consumer acceptance is of crucial importance. The acceptance and usage of the robot is mainly impacted by an individual’s trust towards them. Therefore, examining the creation of trust in delivery robots is of high importance for delivery companies, considering the implementation of such autonomous systems.
The aim of the present research is to identify factors which influence an individual’s trust in delivery robots. Therefore, the following research question has been defined: which factors affect the degree of trust towards robots in the area of last-mile delivery?
Based on the trust theory, claiming that an individual’s level of trust depends on factors related to the trustor, the trustee and the trust situation, a research model has been developed, including several trust creating factors divided within the three overall categories. The categories have been adjusted to the case of last-mile delivery, namely: human-related factors, robot-related factors and situational factors.
In order to answer the research question, an online survey has been conducted with end-consumers in the area of last-mile delivery. The participants responses have been analysed using a multiple regression analysis. The results revealed, that all of the three defined categories have an impact on the level of trust towards delivery robots. Individuals trust delivery robots more if they already perceive them as being useful for the task of delivery. Furthermore, a positive attitude towards new technologies in general supports the individuals trust in delivery robots. Individual’s also express a higher level of trust in delivery robots, when their upcoming actions are more predictable. Finally, individuals tend not to trust delivery robots to deliver hedonic goods, while they trust them to deliver utilitarian goods.
Delivery companies considering the deployment of delivery robots should take into account the deployment of human-robot collaborations as well as implementing an opportunity to reveal the robots upcoming actions in order to overcome trust issues. Further research should focus on examining factors like gender, age, experience with autonomous systems and the area of living.



Access FinalVersion_Masterthesis.pdf
Description: Masterthesis_Hofmann Tina
Size: 1.03 MB
Format: Adobe PDF


  • Hofmann, Tina ULiège Université de Liège > Master sc. gest., à fin.


Committee's member(s)

  • Büttgen , Marion
  • Limbourg, Sabine ULiège Université de Liège - ULiège > HEC Liège : UER > UER Opérations : Logistique
    ORBi View his publications on ORBi
  • Total number of views 181
  • Total number of downloads 737

All documents available on MatheO are protected by copyright and subject to the usual rules for fair use.
The University of Liège does not guarantee the scientific quality of these students' works or the accuracy of all the information they contain.