The almost unlimited storage capacity provided by electronic data processing in modern organizations often leaves decision-makers with a feeling of uncertainty and incompleteness, and requires new adaptation mechanisms in dealing with information. In addition to the storage and retrieval of information, effective knowledge management increasingly requires an effective and flexible selection of essential information, e.g. in decision-making processes under uncertainty or highly dynamic contextual conditions (volatile markets, etc.). Here, information systems can provide important support functions, assuming that users trust them and use them accordingly.
The tandem project of the University of Münster with the disciplines of work, organizational & business psychology (Guido Hertel) and information systems (Jörg Becker) focuses on studies of motivational factors that can hinder or promote intentional forgetting in organizations. Intentional forgetting is operationalized by the extent to which information systems are used. Information systems are seen as triggers of intentional forgetting in organizations, providing users with relevant information so that less relevant information can fade into the background (gradual forgetting). As a result, the use of information systems can save resources and significantly increase the quality and speed of decisions by focusing on the essential decision criteria. In addition, the use of information systems can convey security and reduce stress among users. However, gradual forgetting is not always easy for decision-makers in work organizations. For example, there are risks that the information system does not work reliably or quickly enough, that the representation does not match current needs, or that the risk of making a wrong decision, e.g., due to expected operational sanctions, is higher than the economic benefit of forgetting. In addition, affective moods and dispositional preferences (need for cognition, conscientiousness, etc.) play an important role. Intentional forgetting through the use of information systems is therefore associated with risks and corresponding worries and demands that can impair the effectiveness of information systems. The research project addresses the development of design guidelines for information systems that enable users to rely on these very systems in order to "confidently" forget.