A Dynamic Sequence Model of Information Sharing Processes in Virtual Teams
- Aaron Schecter, Management Information Systems, University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia, United States
- Noshir Contractor, Industrial Engineering & Management Sciences, Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois, United States
AbstractSharing information is a critical component of virtual team functioning. While prior research has identified the motivations for and the structure of information sharing, there has been little emphasis on the dynamic patterning of sharing behavior. In this study, we focus on the process of information sharing, namely the sequence and timing of individual decisions during a virtual team task. Further, we argue that sharing behaviors can be categorized into a finite number of approaches. We propose a temporal, event-based model to uncover the behavioral and cognitive factors that influence information sharing. With a sample of 600 participants organized into thirty ad hoc virtual teams, we demonstrate significant heterogeneity in sharing propensities. Our study makes two contributions to the extant literature. First, we extend theories regarding the motivation and structure of information sharing. Second, we make a broader methodological contribution with the application of a latent-class relational event model.
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