Take a Deep Breath and Tell Me All About It: An Experimental Study on the Effect of Breathing on Privacy Decisions

Tawfiq Alashoor, Andreas Blicher, Rob Gleasure

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingArticle in proceedingsResearchpeer-review


This study investigates whether stress-relief breathing techniques can impact privacy decisions (i.e., the breavacy hypothesis). We asked 44 partici-pants to complete a disclosure task consisting of 32 personal questions of low, moderate, and high sensitivity. Prior to the task, participants were assigned to a control condition, coherent breathing condition, or box breathing condition. The results reveal that participants in the box breathing condition disclosed the most personal information, followed by those in the coherent breathing condition, and the least disclosure in the control condition. The respiration data indicate that both coherent and box breathing increased the average respiration cycle duration – suggesting greater activation of the parasympathetic nervous system – with a more significant increase for box breathing than coherent breathing. Heart-rate data demonstrate that arousal is not affected by the breathing exercises. Our find-ings pave the way for new avenues of NeuroIS research exploring the relationship between breathing and privacy.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings NeuroIS Retreat 2023 : Vienna, Austria, May 30 - June 1
EditorsFred D. Davis, René Riedl, Jan vom Brocke, Pierre-Majorique Léger, Adriane B. Randolph, Gernot R. Müller-Putz
Number of pages11
Place of PublicationWWW
PublisherNeuro-Information-Systems (NeuroIS)
Publication date2023
Publication statusPublished - 2023
Event15th Anniversary NeuroIS Retreat 2023 - Vienna, Austria
Duration: 30 May 20231 Jun 2023
Conference number: 15


Conference15th Anniversary NeuroIS Retreat 2023
Internet address


  • Breathing
  • Privacy Decisions
  • Breavacy Hypothesis
  • NeuroIS

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