The role of temporal coordination for the fuzzy front-end of innovation in virtual teams

Chamakiotis, Petros, Boukis, Achilleas, Panteli, Niki and Papadopoulos, Athanasios (2020) The role of temporal coordination for the fuzzy front-end of innovation in virtual teams. International Journal of Information Management, 50. pp. 182-190. ISSN 0268-4012

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Abstract

In this paper, we study the role of temporal coordination in managing the early stages of innovation (aka fuzzy front-end) in the context of virtual teams. Following a comparative case study approach, we detail the role of temporal coordination through the study of two contrasting virtual teams—one with a 24-hour lifespan, and one with a five-month lifespan—from two Industry-Academia open innovation projects. Our approach was longitudinal capturing virtual team activities from start to end of each project, and involved multiple data collection methods, including observations and interviews. The findings reveal that the virtual team lifespan influences the type of temporal coordination that emerges. In virtual teams with short lifespans, tight coordination with frequent communication can help to reduce the uncertainty characterizing the fuzzy front-end. On the other hand, in virtual teams with longer lifespans, loose coordination allows dispersed members to work simultaneously on different, complementary aspects of the task at hand. These findings extend scholarly understanding around how innovation activities are coordinated in technology-mediated environments, such as virtual teams. Finally, we discuss theoretical and managerial implications.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of Business, Management and Economics > Economics
School of Engineering and Informatics > Engineering and Design
Depositing User: Petros Chamakiotis
Date Deposited: 29 Apr 2019 14:16
Last Modified: 01 Jul 2019 12:31
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/83453

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