E-collaboration media use and diversity perceptions: An evolutionary perspective of virtual organizations

Sherry M.B. Thatcher, Susan A. Brown, Jeffrey L. Jenkins

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Virtual organizations enable collaboration and interaction among a diverse set of people regardless of their temporal and spatial dispersion. Throughout the life of a virtual organization, diversity plays an influential role in determining outcomes that ultimately affect the longevity and success of the organization. The goal of this paper is to describe the role diversity plays during different organizational evolutionary approaches, and how e-collaboration media characteristics interact with diversity and organizational evolution to influence outcomes. The authors leverage media synchronicity theory to discuss how the characteristics of different e-collaboration media can reduce or enhance perceived diversity. The role that perceived diversity has in determining outcomes is a function of whether a virtual organization is evolving according to the life-cycle, telelogical, or dialectic evolutionary approaches. Guided by organizational evolution, diversity, attribution, and media theories, the authors propose a theoretical framework with a set ofpropositions. The authors also provide an illustration of how the framework may be implemented by managers of virtual organizations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)28-46
Number of pages19
JournalInternational Journal of e-Collaboration
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2012


  • Diversity
  • E-collaboration
  • Media characteristics
  • Media synchronicity theory
  • Organizational evolution
  • Social and task outcomes
  • Virtual organizations

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science Applications
  • Computer Networks and Communications


Dive into the research topics of 'E-collaboration media use and diversity perceptions: An evolutionary perspective of virtual organizations'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this