Document Type

Dissertation - Open Access

Award Date


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department / School

Sociology and Rural Studies

First Advisor

Robert M. Dimit


Social structural factors and individual characteristics related to innovativeness were studied in a random sample of 402 South Dakota owners of registered snowmobiles. Data collection employed a mailed questionnaire. The objectives of the study were to determine: (1) Which, if any, sociopsychological and sociodemographic individual characteristics explain variations in innovativeness with regard to purchasing of snowmobiles; (2) Whether community norm as a structural effect contributes to the explanation of variations in snowmobiler innovativeness when individual characteristics of adoptors are partialed out or controlled; and, (3) Whether the general contours of the adoption-diffusion model may be extended to the area of recreation and leisure. Findings related to the first objective were obtained through the use of multiple regression analysis. Individual characteristics which had a significant, positive relationship with snowmobiler innovativeness were leisure orientation, perceived opportunity for leisure, and membership in formal organizations. Age and size of hometown showed a negative relationship with innovativeness. Characteristics not significantly associated with innovativeness were: perceived parental socialization for appreciating the outdoors, number of winter recreational activities engaged in between ages 12 and 17, perceived adequacy of snow for snowmobiling, reading of outdoor recreation oriented magazines, membership in· outdoor recreation oriented groups, perceived parental socialization for innovativeness, self-concept regarding innovativeness, education, and income. Based on partial correlation and multiple regression analysis, the findings for the second objective of the study indicated no significant relationship between perceived community norm on recreational innovativeness and individual innovativeness in purchasing of snowmobiles. A structural effect on innovative recreational behavior of individuals was not observed. With regard to objective three, it was concluded that the adoption-diffusion perspective is applicable in the sphere of recreational innovation. A combination of 16 structural and individual effects variables as suggested by the literature on adoption-diffusion and recreation succeeded in explaining approximately one-fourth of the variance in individual innovativeness scores (R2 = 0.23326).

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Technological innovations -- Social aspects
Diffusion of innovations




South Dakota State University

Included in

Sociology Commons