Virtual team trust: Instrument development and validation in an IS educational environment

Saonee Sarker, Joseph S. Valacich, Suprateek Sarker

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

77 Scopus citations


Trust is a major factor influencing the cohesiveness among virtual team members. While recent research in the fields of information systems and management has examined this construct, there are no existing instruments that measure all the different bases of trust. Drawing on the literature, three different bases of trust applicable to virtual teams have been identified: personality-based, institutional-based, and cognitive trust, with cognitive trust further subdivided into three dimensions: stereotyping, unit grouping, and reputation categorization. This paper reports on the development of an instrument to capture these three bases of trust. Using exploratory, and thereafter, confirmatory factor analysis, the instrument is validated, and the psychometric properties of the construct(s) are verified in the context of U.S.-Canadian student virtual teams engaged in systems development projects. In addition to confirming the conceptual bases of trust, the instrument validation process found that stereotyping in virtual teams can be of three distinct types: message-based, physical appearance/behavior-based, and technology-based. The development and validation of this instrument should enable future researchers to measure virtual team trust in a broad range of technology and team configurations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)35-55
Number of pages21
JournalInformation Resources Management Journal
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2003


  • Confirmatory factor analysis
  • Groups
  • Instrument development
  • Trust
  • Virtual teams

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Strategy and Management
  • Library and Information Sciences


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