12/2019 Journal contributions

Schüffler, Arnulf | Thim, Christof | Haase, Jennifer | Gronau, Norbert | Kluge, Annette

Information Processing in Work Environment 4.0 and the Beneficial Impact of Intentional Forgetting on Change Management


Industry 4.0, based on increasingly progressive digitalization, is a global phenomenon that affects every part of our work. The Internet of Things (IoT) is pushing the process of automation, culminating in the total autonomy of cyber-physical systems. This process is accompanied by a massive amount of data, information, and new dimensions of flexibility. As the amount of available data increases, their specific timeliness decreases. Mastering Industry 4.0 requires humans to master the new dimensions of information and to adapt to relevant ongoing changes. Intentional forgetting can make a difference in this context, as it discards nonprevailing information and actions in favor of prevailing ones. Intentional forgetting is the basis of any adaptation to change, as it ensures that nonprevailing memory items are not retrieved while prevailing ones are retained. This study presents a novel experimental approach that was introduced in a learning factory (the Research and Application Center Industry 4.0) to investigate intentional forgetting as it applies to production routines. In the first experiment (N = 18), in which the participants collectively performed 3046 routine related actions (t1 = 1402, t2 = 1644), the results showed that highly proceduralized actions were more difficult to forget than actions that were less well-learned. Additionally, we found that the quality of cues that trigger the execution of routine actions had no effect on the extent of intentional forgetting.

Category Journal contributions
Authors Schüffler, Arnulf; Thim, Christof; Haase, Jennifer; Gronau, Norbert; Kluge, Annette
Journal Zeitschrift für Arbeits-und Organisationspsychologie A&O
Date 12/2019
Volume 64
Edition 1
pp. 17 - 29
Publisher Hogrefe Verlag
DOI 10.1026/0932-4089/a000307
Keywords Intentional Forgetting, Retrieval Cues, Production Routines
ISSN 0932-4089